Qatar University’s 7th instalment of its popular annual Computing Contest was launched in a ceremony held last Monday.
The event was attended by College of Engineering (CENG) Dean Dr Rashid Alammari, Associate Dean for Development and Industrial Relations Dr Saud Ghani, Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) department head Dr Sebti Foufou, Contest Committee head Dr Elsayed Sayed and members, and sponsor representatives Snr Development Officer Mr Abdulrahman Sultan Darwish from QAPCO, and Snr Machinery Reliability Engineer Mr Omaer Al Nuaimi from Dolphin Energy.
Members of participating schools learned firsthand about the structure, rules and prizes of the contest which entails students designing, building and programming a robot to do certain tasks in a specific time.
Commenting on the contest, Dr Alammari noted that it targets secondary school students to build their awareness of the importance to the community of computer science and computer engineering as well as all engineering disciplines. He thanked the sponsors for their support of the contest which he said had become an important event on the calendar for high school students, teachers, principals and parents.
Mr Darwish said: “It is a tremendous privilege for QAPCO to sponsor this Qatar University initiative, to be able to support the youth of Qatar and to contribute to their education. QAPCO is always keen to participate and support events and activities that contribute to Qatar’s National Vision 2030”. He noted that it is the first year that QAPCO is involved in the contest and expressed the hope that it will not be the last. “This competition is a great example of learning at its very best. It is an innovative way of encouraging the students to learn about computing, the technical aspects of robotics as well as life skills in leadership, teamwork and communication as they compete. I wish them well”, he said.
Mr Al Nuaimi said: “Dolphin Energy is keen to interact with high school students whenever possible to highlight the company’s latest activities. It also prides itself on supporting important scientific programs that aim to develop practical and academic skills and provide the country with specialists from all fields of engineering”.
Prof Foufou stated that the Computing Contest is considered one of the most important high school initiatives to raise students’ awareness of various scientific and engineering principles, and prepare them to join QU and other academic institutions. “They are tomorrow’s leaders and it is incumbent on us to lend our expertise in guiding them towards becoming professionals in the computer science and engineering field”, he added.
The first phase of the contest will include training workshops for teachers to be held on March 8 and 15. Participating students will attend training sessions in the coming weeks in the lead up to the closing ceremony in May when winners will be announced, with first place receiving QR 10000 and a scholarship to study at CSE, and second and third place receiving QR6000 and QR 4000 respectively, Dr Sayed explained.