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High school researchers mentored by Texas A&M at Qatar STEM expert win first place in national competition

Published Jan 06, 2021

A team of high school student researchers mentored by a STEM expert from Texas A&M University at Qatar, a Qatar Foundation partner university, recently won first place in the annual National Competition for Scientific Research organized by Ministry of Education and Higher Education (MOEHE) and Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF).

Dr. Mohamed Gharib from Texas A&M at Qatar’s Office of Engagement mentored the researchers, Abdulrahman Alsulaiti and Ibrahim Buhendi from the Qatar Science and Technology Secondary School. Their project, “Development of a Novel Modular Robot for Vertical Pipeline Climbing,” was part of the High School Research Experience Program (HSREP) funded by QNRF in 2019.

The national competition for scientific research is organized annually and is attended by education leaders, partners and interested in student research, and all school students and educators. The National Scientific Research and Innovation week is one of the most prominent manifestations of interest in scientific research.

The 2020 competition started in December 2019 and continued until February 2020, during which students from schools across Qatar submitted a total of 705 research projects. Out of these, 153 outstanding projects were shortlisted to participate in the competition. These projects were selected based on their originality and potential to propose ingenious solutions to solve the foremost challenges faced by Qatar, the region and the world.

The project also led to a research paper that was presented at the 2020 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition organized by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).

“Engaging high school students in such research projects at this early age will equip them with the necessary tools to tackle real-life engineering challenges during their engineering studies and after graduation,” Gharib said.