Aberdeen alumnus receives prestigious Science and Sustainability Award

Aberdeen alumnus receives prestigious Science and Sustainability Award

A University of Aberdeen graduate has received a prestigious award at the British Council Study UK Alumni Awards 2022-23 in Saudi Arabia.

Hani A. Alhadrami, from Saudi Arabia studied for both an MSc and a PhD at the University of Aberdeen between Sep 2006 - Sep 2011 and has been awarded the Science and Sustainability Award, which recognises alumni who have distinguished themselves through their career and achievements in the world of science and sustainability. 

With an impressive career in his field of expertise, Hani is currently Professor and Consultant of Molecular Diagnostics and Medical Biotechnology at King Abdulaziz University in Saudi Arabia. 

Following his studies in Aberdeen, Hani has dedicated his life to academic and community services, contributed to over 80 publications in Q1/Q2 high-impact peer-reviewed journals and several invited review articles, established several academic degrees that serve the community, founded the Saudi Society of Molecular Biology & Biotechnology and supported the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic which yielded four USA-patented inventions. 

During the Covid-19 pandemic he invented and developed a novel, low-cost, sensitive, and rapid diagnostic platform for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 as an alternative to PCR which was patented in the USA. He was also able to discover several drugs with superior anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity and granted a further three patents in the USA. 

In 2022 he was listed by Stanford University and Elsevier as one of the top 2% cited scientists worldwide. 

During his academic career, he has supervised many undergraduate and postgraduate students and has inspired them to continue their postgraduate studies in the UK. While studying for his own PhD in Aberdeen, he helped his supervisor establish many experimental protocols, teaching and co-supervising MSc students which gave him the experience necessary to initiate the first Medical Sterilization diploma in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 2013 after been asked to do so by the Ministry of Health. 

Professor Alhadrami said: “Throughout my career as a scientist and a researcher, I have been presented with a plethora of opportunities that led to several accomplishments and rewards but, winning the British Council Study Alumni Awards 2022-23 was definitely amongst the best. The competition was so difficult, and I have been selected from hundreds of applicants with outstanding achievements in Science and Sustainability.

"During the awards ceremony, I was feeling like I was at the Oscars!  I was literally shaking when they announced my name as the winner of the prize! This award is simply the best award I have won in my life, and I am so proud of it. Behind every brilliant scientist is a support system that will pave the way for new discoveries. For me, this support system was the University of Aberdeen. With the University’s extensive aid and resources, they allowed me to develop a strong foundation and understanding of what it was like to be a world-leading scientist. I would like to express my gratitude to both the British Embassy in Riyadh (specially H.M. Ambassador Neil Crompton) and the British Council (specially Eilidh Kennedy McLean) for this award and for providing me with this great opportunity, and hope to be present in many awards as we look forward into the future. I further express my gratitude to the University of Aberdeen for making me equipped with all the skills and knowledge to be a leader in my field.” 

The British Embassy and British Council announced the finalists at a ceremony last week. The finalists were selected from hundreds of applicants for their outstanding achievements as business professionals, entrepreneurs and community leaders, and for their important contribution to strengthening collaborative ties between the UK and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.