The Emirates College for Management & Information Technology (ECMIT) is a leading private English-medium institution of higher education which was originally established and licensed by the UAE Ministry of Education in 1998 as Emirates Center for Management and Information Technology. The founders at that time envisioned a Center that would meet the challenging demands of the student community in Dubai by offering an affordable American style undergraduate program in business and computer engineering. These ambitions were clearly reflected in the Center’s Vision and Mission statements that were to follow soon. Accordingly, a B.Sc. program consisting of first two years of studies leading to associate degrees and the remaining two years of studies leading to a full bachelor degree was launched in partnership with Champlain College, Burlington, Vermont, USA in the same year.
The program was developed to be equivalent in content and quality to those offered by similar size and type institutions in the USA. The program started with a small group of 10 students in 1998 with a vision to become a leading American style education provider in the UAE. The impact of the collaboration was profound: the student enrolment rose sharply to around 1000 in a span of five years. During the academic year 2002- 2003, the Center went through an accreditation review process with New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), Bedford, Boston, USA which found the Center eligible for the accreditation. The review led to the accreditation of the Center by NEASC in 2003. Thus, ECMIT became one of the few institutions in the Gulf to be accredited by one of the world’s foremost accreditation bodies.
In 2004, the Center was renamed Emirates College For Management and Information Technology, and a set of five mission driven goals was developed which was to shape the future course of the College. In 2003, the College proposed to the Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE) of the UAE its own 2-year AS degree programs in inter disciplinary sciences with majors in business and IT which were given initial accreditation in 2004. The first cohort consisting of 102 students started in the academic year 2004-5 and graduated in 2006-7. The College dissociated itself from the Champlain College in 2005 and moved from Garhoud, Dubai area to the present Al-Nahda campus.
ECMIT’s first 5-Year Strategic Plan for 2006-2011 was developed in 2006. Termed as “Planning for Excellence at ECMIT”, the plan identified seven strategies of developments for achieving the institutional goals. The Plan served as a foundation upon which the entire planning, assessment, and evaluation cycles of the college were built over the years. In the first year of the plan, an organization structure was developed, relevant administrators were hired and an action plan was developed to follow through various initiatives as outlined in the plan. Over the next four years, the College continued to work through this action plan maturing further the organization structure, developing a mission driven plan for institutional effectiveness, and an outcome oriented academic assessment plan. These efforts and planning have created a unique learning environment at the college in which the staff, faculty and students have come together to make the college an excellent place of learning. The Self Study Committee, after carefully reviewing these strategies, goals and the achievements made so far, has determined that the next five year (2011-2016) Strategic Plan should not change the direction, rather the plan should be built within the context, scope and direction set by the previous Strategic Plan.
In 2010, the College developed a 2-semester Foundation Program consisting of basic courses in English, Mathematics, IT, Arabic and Study Skills to prepare academically disadvantaged students who could not satisfy the admission criteria set by the MOHE for higher studies in the UAE. The Program was approved by the MOHE in the same year.
The College has come a long way since its establishment in 1998. It has developed a western style administrative structure in which the college is led by a President with extensive experience in North American higher education system and by a Vice President of Academic Affairs who possesses extensive expertise in higher education system in UAE. The Academic Affairs is organized in four academic divisions: Foundation and Remedial, General Education, Management and Information Technology. These divisions are supported by a well organized network of auxiliary units such as: Advising and Registration, Computer and IT Services , Library, Admissions and Marketing, and Student Affairs. The programs are delivered in English in a gender-unified environment that allows male and female students to study together. Furthermore, the College has established a well functioning Institutional Planning and Effectiveness Unit which coordinates and supports ECMIT’s efforts to plan, assess, and improve achievements, and conduct institutional research for informed decision making and planning.
Over a period of more than one decade, the college has graduated six classes totaling over 381 students. Today these students occupy strategic positions in government, business, public and private sectors making significant contributions to the national economy. Over the years, ECMIT has followed the ideal of practical independent thinking by teaching students the skills and knowledge they need to be successful in life. Though they come from diverse backgrounds, students share a commitment to achieving their individual career aspirations. The College has nurtured this commitment in an academic environment responsive to the changing needs of the workplace and by providing strong career planning support and attention to the needs of each student. The constant emphasis at ECMIT has been to build a community network through its connections with potential employers, and delivering a supportive environment in which students can achieve their goals.