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Dubai Startup Hub's Emirati Development Program: 'My Startup Went From Idea Stage To A Platform With Customers In Less Than Two Months' Dubai Startup Hub's Emirati Development Program is designed to identify, develop and mentor promising UAE national talent interested in pursuing entrepreneurship or private sector opportunities as a career path.

By Megha Merani

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

You're reading Entrepreneur Middle East, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

TutorMe team

Sultan Eisa Alhosani walked into the Emirati Development Program with an idea for a tutoring site.

One bootcamp and about a month-and-a-half of non-stop work later, the idea is now a revenue-generating platform that he runs along with his fellow co-founders Omar Ali Alsuwaidi and Fahad Saeed Alzarooni.

"I learnt the fundamentals of starting my own business at the [Emirati Development Program] session," Alhosani, founder of TutorMe.Academy, said in an interview.

"The mentors helped me understand the path in terms of where to start, how to enter the market the correct and best way, and how to really understand my customers. And as one of the mentors explained, you have to move very fast, be lean, pivot and adapt– which is what we did."

Dubai Startup Hub's Emirati Development Program is designed to identify, develop and mentor promising UAE national talent interested in pursuing entrepreneurship or private sector opportunities as a career path.

The program features four-week tailored entrepreneurship training for 30 selected Emiratis, followed by comprehensive one-on-one mentorship support for the top five selected attendees, equipping them with the knowledge and skills needed to drive their idea or business forward. The Training and Mentorship Academy runs in collaboration with Dubai Technology Entrepreneurs Campus (Dtec).

Related: Dubai Startup Hub And Smart Dubai Host Open Data Workshop For Entrepreneurs In The Medical Tourism Domain

Alhosani, a civil engineering student at the American University of Sharjah, said the idea for TutorMe came to him because he has been teaching and helping friends study for many years, and found that one-to-one tuition proved to be one of the best ways to improve grades. But while the 21-year-old generously gave his time and expertise for free, he realized that individual tuition has been out of reach for most families because it was either too expensive, limited in availability, or relied on living near a good tutor.

"The other challenge is that the education sector has stayed exactly the same throughout my studies and even for so many decades before," he explained. "We observe this challenge coming to light much more now with the sudden increase in demand for distance learning as a result of the coronavirus situation, but this was always an area that needed huge improvement. I know this because my friends and I have experienced the challenge as both a student and a tutor. Nothing has changed in the way we are being taught."

TutorMe was founded to offer life-changing tuition for all and to solving some of the education sector's biggest challenges while helping students from all backgrounds and different skill levels do better at school and university through tailored lessons that fit their schedules from the comfort of their homes.

"We've given over hundred lessons [so far] and results show that our pupils improve by an average of one whole grade in just 12 lessons," Alhosani said, adding that grades are directly linked to life chances and career progression.

"By connecting students all over the world to the best instructors, TutorMe is helping individuals reach their goals and pursue their dreams," he added.

Alhosani and his cofounders are now looking forward to the next set of trainings and mentorship sessions featured in the Emirati Development Program to learn how to further develop their minimum viable product (MVP).

"I want to understand how we can expand and grow our model," he said. "We also need help with our technology and hope to network more through Dubai Startup Hub so we can find people with the right technical expertise to join our team."

TutorMe has also been incubated by the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT).

The Emirati, who has previously completed internships with various UAE government entities, said that while the public sector remains an option alongside he is certain that he wants to pursue entrepreneurship as his path in life.

"I love to solve problems so I will always want to build enterprises that address a challenge."

For more information and to apply to the Emirati Development Program, click here.

This article was originally published on Dubai Startup Hub and has been reposted on Entrepreneur Middle East based on a mutual agreement between the websites.

Related: Dubai Startup Junkbot Launches Fight Corona Robotic Championship To Support Pandemic Response Efforts In The UAE

Megha Merani

Independent Journalist

Megha Merani is an independent journalist based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Her stories have made headlines across a number of publications including Reuters, Associated Press, Entrepreneur Middle EastBloomberg Middle East, Arabian Gulf Business Insight, Arabian Business, and former local daily 7DAYS.

Megha also produces editorial for government platforms including the World Government Summit and World Economic Forum's Annual Meeting of the Global Future Councils. She has been a grant winner of the Thomson Reuters Foundation and The Global Initiative Against Organized Crime funded by the government of Norway to report on the online trade in illegal wildlife.

Megha is also an Associate Fellow (AFHEA) at Murdoch University in Dubai and leads its Digital Newsroom course unit. In addition, Megha serves as a United Nations Women mentor to support equal opportunities for women entrepreneurs, and supports various other programs including TIE Women, 60 Day Startups, and the Watt Inc. Business Incubator.


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