Young AI inventors shine at school science fair - GulfToday

Young AI inventors shine at school science fair

SharjahAmericanSchool

The Black Hole Team (L-R): Remas Emad, Tasneem Alazy, Khadijah Mohsen, Shams Jarrar, Shamma Ashraf, Farah Alkhatib, Mahra Abdulrahman, Alia Albastony, and Amalia Kourken.

Mariecar Jara-Puyod, Senior Reporter

Over 400 students of the Sharjah American International School in Al Ramaqia, Sharjah participated in a one-day science fair that showcased their inquisitiveness and skilfulness in artificial intelligence (AI).

The participants were from Grades 7 to 12 who used up six weeks of their full academic term in putting up concepts and gadgets or tools under the theme “Artificial Intelligence and Skills of the Future.”

AI was the choice of the school management for this year’s edition of the annual science fair in alignment with the UAE government strategies, according to Academics assistant principal/Science Department head Shady Elkassas.

The projects that utilised sensors, neuroscience, robotics, AI and programming were “related to renewable and sustainable resources” as the school is among the over 11,500 members of the Unesco (United Nations Educational, Scientific, Cultural Organisation) Associated Schools Network in 182 countries “in support of international understanding, peace, inter-cultural dialogue, sustainable development and quality education in practice.”

Interviewed, Grade 8 of the Prometheus Robotics Team Ahmed Almarzouqi said, “It was a great experience to work on different types of robotics and programming skills in order to accomplish specific missions.”

“I am so happy to work on a new AI technology which is SAMLABS that applies the concepts of the Internet of things,” said Grade 8 Rawdha Almarzouqi.

Sisters Shamma and Hind Alkous said their being partners, this time on the water desalination project, drove them much closer to each other as they enjoyed the “wonderful journey on the future of water resources which has great impact on humanity.” 

All four along with Horizon Sustainability Energy partners Sara Ahmed and Maitha Alharmoodi; Black Hole Team Remas Emad, Tasneem Alazy, Khadijah Mohsen, Shams Jarrar, Shamma Ashraf, Farah Alkhatib, Mahra Abdulrahman, Alia Albastony, Amalia Kourken; other Prometheus Robotics guys Salim Saif, Mohamed Alshamlan, Fares Nasreldien, Abdullah Alhamadi, Mohamed Jarrar, and Ibrahim Alshamis; and the other half of the SAMSLABS, Judy Alzadek, were grateful that they were given another opportunity to explore more of the world and which let them use what they have learnt from their Stem (Science-Technology-Engineering-Mathematics) classes “for and in real life applications.”

They were thankful for the assistance and encouragement from the teachers who explained to them further sustainable development and the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Elkassas said: “The fair is another avenue for them to learn. We believe in outside the classroom setting (of education).”

Last month, Omar Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence and Deputy Managing Director of Dubai Future Foundation, DFF, highlighted the role of building solid international ties, establishing global partnerships, and employing modern technologies across various industries in supporting the UAE’s efforts in developing the industry of the future, according to WAM.

He made these remarks while leading a UAE delegation during his visit to Washington, USA. The delegation included CEO of DFF, Khalfan Belhoul, and comes as part of the preparation to host “FIRST Global”, the first international robotics challenge of its kind in the Middle East and North Africa, to be held in Dubai in October.

“Robotics is one of the most important future technologies that attract talents from all over the globe, and is considered a key factor in shaping the future of humanity,” said Al Olama. “This global competition will serve as a platform for the brightest minds and talents from all around the world, and will help showcase their innovations and creativity in the field of robots,” he added.

The delegation met, alongside Yousef Al Otaiba, the UAE Ambassador to the United States, US, with a number of American officials at the “Capitol Hill” in Washington, including Rick Perry, US Secretary Of Energy, Steny Hoyer, House Majority Leader, US Senators Jeanne Shaheen and Mitt Romney, in addition to Marie Royce, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs, and Dean Kamen, founder of ‘FIRST Global’.