Jeddah: The National Center for Wildlife (NCW) highlighted the achievements of Saudi citizen Afrah Alothman; who is the first Arab female to lead a crewless submarine in deep water on the International Day for Women and Girls in Science.
The center stated that Afrah Alothman; a Ph.D. student in marine sciences from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST); had led the submarine during the 19-week expedition to explore the Red Sea launched by the center on February 4.
Afrah, orphaned at a young age, began her education in Al-Ahsa, where she obtained her BA in biology with distinction from King Faisal University. After that, she decided to complete her postgraduate studies at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada. She completed her master’s degree in biology as part of King Abdullah’s Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Program for External Scholarship.
According to the KAUST website, Afrah Al-Othman had expressed her goal to explore the Red Sea; and be an influential member who contributes to the transfer of experiences to her generation and future generations.
“I always dreamed of being of influence to the girls in my community,” she stated. “specializing in biology was the first step toward my bigger goal, but the scholarship was the actual journey that shaped my personality. When I completed [my studies] and returned home with a master’s degree, knowledge, and experiences gained from living abroad for several years, Afrah Al-Othman said.
Al-Othman prepared her first scientific research paper for publication one year after joining KAUST and the Red Sea Research Center. She is pleased with her accomplishments, which contribute to serious research and scientific achievements.
The International Day for Women and Girls in Science is a United Nations designated day aimed at accelerating gender equity; and improving access and participation in science for women and girls.