Texas A&M at Qatar show brings science to life for nearly 6,000 schoolchildren in QatarPublished Jun 12, 2018
Since January, nearly 6,000 school students in Qatar witnessed science and engineering in action during an engaging new educational show presented by Texas A&M University at Qatar.
The Science and Engineering Road Show is part of Texas A&M at Qatar’s ongoing efforts to attract Qatar’s best and brightest young minds to choose career paths in STEM and support the goals set out in the Qatar National Vision 2030. STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) experts at Texas A&M at Qatar developed the road show with support from local industry.
Officially launched in November 2017, organizers said they far exceeded their goal of reaching 6,000 students in a single year by engaging 5,916 students in just six months. Thirty-five shows were performed at 20 different schools and four special events, including Texas A&M at Qatar’s STEM Fest, ACS Family Day and QF’s Community Development event.
Texas A&M at Qatar’s Benjamin Cieslinski said the road show is tailored to all student age groups. Cieslinski and Dr. Mohamed Gharib perform the demonstrations and experiments in English with Arabic-language support. During the show, Cieslinski and Gharib demonstrate science and engineering concepts and talk to students about how those principles can be seen in real life. Select students even have the opportunity to join the show for some hands-on experience.
Cieslinski said the goal of the show is to introduce young students to STEM concepts and demonstrate the science and engineering that surrounds them every day that they may take for granted. Show modules are based on themes, such as temperature, pressure, fluid flow, polymers, and chemical structure.
“We want students to know that science and engineering can be fun and exciting and creative,” Cieslinski said. “We want them to ask questions and to be inquisitive and hopefully want to find their own answers to challenges by pursuing careers in STEM.”
Christina Balint from American Academy Al Wakra said she thought the show was a great way to engage students in real-world science and technology.
"I thought the show was absolutely phenomenal,” Balint said. “It kept students engaged for the entire hour. It wowed them and taught them at the same time. I couldn't have been more pleased with the performance and its educational value. During the show, my time was torn between being impressed by what I was witnessing and watching both student and fellow teachers’ faces full of awe and wonderment. The students were craving more and talked about the show for days. Benjamin has an exceptional ability to read the audience and knows that the bigger you go, the more engagement and learning from the students."
Texas A&M at Qatar is currently accepting road show registrations for the fall semester at www.STEM.qa.