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George Abbey, a professor at Rice University and former director of NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, was welcomed to King Saud University this week, where he met with officials to discuss venues of joint cooperation between KSU and Rice.

KSU officials, led by Vice Rector for Graduate Studies and Research Prof. Ali Al-Ghamdi, acquainted Dr. Abbey with the University’s world-class centers for scientific research and development such as the Riyadh Technology Valley (RTV) and the Riyadh Technology Incubation Center (RTIC), and  accompanied him on a tour of the University.

A Senior Fellow in Space Policy for the James Baker III Institute at Rice University, Dr. Abbey was a member of the team that received the US Medal of Freedom, for the key role its members played in the Apollo 13 space mission. He continues to serve as a policy adviser to NASA.

Members of the KSU delegation, which included Dr. Al-Ghamdi, Assistant Vice Rector for Graduate Studies and Scientific; Mohamed Fnais, Executive Director for the Riyadh Technology Incubation Center (RTIC); Mezyad Alterkawi, supervisor of the International Twinning Program; and Sa'ad Alhussein , were extremely enthusiastic about Abbey’s visit, citing his extraordinary experience and expertise as being  invaluable assets for KSU science programs.

Dr. Alterkawi said that such ties are creating tangible progress at King Saud University, thanks largely to the vision, commitment and active leadership of Rector Al-Othman and Vice Rector Al-Ghamdi, who have been extremely successful in establishing academic and scientific ties between KSU and some of the top universities in the world.