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Qatar high school students recognized for completing rigorous pre-college program at Texas A&M at Qatar

Published Feb 01, 2009

Texas A&M University at Qatar today recognized 40 high-achieving Qatari high school students who completed a rigorous two-week science and math enrichment program in collaboration with the Supreme Education Council's Higher Education Institute.

The students, enrolled at 10 Doha high schools, took 40 hours of chemistry, math and physics as part of a pre-college enrichment program designed to encourage the students to consider pursuing education and careers in engineering and science.

Dr. Mark H. Weichold, dean and CEO of Texas A&M at Qatar, presented the students with certificates of achievement and congratulated them on completing the program. "This is a significant educational accomplishment," Weichold told the students. "Your completion of this program proves that you are on the right track to be successful university students in engineering and science."

During the program's opening ceremony two weeks ago, Weichold urged the students to consider the importance of their studies at the University. "Your opportunities for learning are immense. Today, you are sitting in the same chairs as full-time undergraduate engineering students who, not too long ago, were in high school just as you are now," Weichold said. "And you are learning from some of the same outstanding faculty members who teach our undergraduate students."

Those faculty members say students were anxious to learn. Dr. Hassan S. Bazzi, coordinator of the University's science program and a professor of chemistry, said the students performed well during the courses. "It was a privilege to help organize this program, and I am encouraged to see these high school students earning such high marks," Bazzi said. "These students did well, and that proves that their schools are doing good work."

Mariam Al-Mannai, director of student and community relations for the University, said the enrichment program was a fantastic way to recruit potential engineering students. "Admission to Texas A&M at Qatar is quite competitive," Al-Mannai said. "We are glad to reach out to potential engineering students and to challenge them with math and science that will help prepare them for university studies."

Al-Mannai said she anticipates more programs in the future that will be larger in terms of scope and enrollment. "This enrichment program is just the beginning," she said. "In the coming months we will develop a comprehensive roster of activities that will give Qatar's best and brightest the stimulation they need to become competitive candidates for admission to premier universities, especially Texas A&M at Qatar."