Saudi education minister opens two digital colleges for women

18/09/20

Education minister Hamad Al-Sheikh. (SPA)

RIYADH: Hamad Al-Sheikh inaugurated the first two digital colleges for women in Riyadh and Jeddah on Wednesday.
The ceremony was held in the presence of the governor of the Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC), Ahmed Al-Fuhaid.
The colleges will provide specialized training programs for about 4,000 trainees in several fields. Programs on offer include network systems management, media technology, software, the Internet of things, smart cities, robotics technology, artificial intelligence and machine learning.

This article was first published in Arab News

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OIC discusses ways to empower women in STEM education

11/09/20

JEDDAH: Plans to step up the provision of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education for women and girls were on Thursday discussed at a meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
During a virtual workshop, members of the body’s general secretariat looked at ways of improving access to learning for women and girls in OIC countries. The OIC event was held in cooperation with the Islamic Development Bank (IDB), the Islamic World Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (ICESCO), and the Standing Committee on Scientific and Technological Cooperation.

This article was first published in Arab News

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240,000 students take part in stellar Saudi space education program

29/08/20

Photo/Supplied
  • ‘Through the program, I learned why countries spend billions of dollars on space exploration and the most important satellites launched for this purpose’

JEDDAH: A Saudi space education program for students has proved a stellar success after attracting more than 240,000 online participants.
The “9 Space Trips” initiative, launched by the Saudi Space Authority (SSA) in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, was run during the summer to promote space science and its related fields among middle and high school students.
The program included a variety of space-orientated topics and scientific experiments aimed at youth wishing to learn more about the sector.
Dr. Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh, the SSA’s chief executive, noted the large number of students who had taken part on different interactive platforms and pointed out that through the Space Generations Program (Ajyal) for the development of human capital, the authority aimed to provide an inspirational education environment to encourage the Kingdom’s space scientists of the future.
To help achieve the program’s strategic goals, a number of projects and initiatives have been designed to empower young people to lead and develop the sector. The Ministry of Education is the SSA’s strategic partner, and the “9 Space Trips” summer program marked the start of a joint cooperation project between the two bodies.
Over a three-week period, it included nine virtual and interactive trips on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays lasting two hours per session.
Program participant Mahmoud Al-Hamoud, a 12th grade student from Jeddah, told Arab News that prior taking part he knew little about space, but the experience had enriched his knowledge on the subject.
“Through the program, I learned why countries spend billions of dollars on space exploration and the most important satellites launched for this purpose. Before, I thought that there was only one galaxy, the Milky Way. We were told that there are 12 trillion galaxies, and this reflects the greatness of the Creator,” he said.
Al-Hamoud added that the program taught students how they could become the astronauts of the future and what NASA’s requirements were for becoming a space pilot. “We also learned about the training courses that astronauts receive, in addition to other interesting information about space.”
Although planning to study pharmacology, Al-Hamoud said that participating in the “9 Space Trips” project had made him think seriously about space travel and possibly pursuing a career as a space scientist.
He added that the program mirrored Saudi Arabia’s ambition to produce a generation that could further space exploration.
“The Saudi Space Authority and the Ministry of Education offered an inspiring program that will pave the way for many ambitious students to study space and contribute to international efforts to discover the outer world.”

This article was first published in Arab News

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King Abdul Aziz Center for World Culture launches ‘Tanween Challenges’

Time: 21 August, 2020

The program will run from Aug. 27 to Oct. 18. (Shutterstock)

DHAHRAN: The King Abdul Aziz Center for World Culture (Ithra) launched its Tanween Challenges program on Thursday. The program, which runs from Aug. 27 to Oct. 18, will encourage participants to work with industry experts to design and develop projects and products to benefit Saudi Arabia.
The five challenges announced so far on Ithra’s website are: “Reimagining the Crafts of Saudi Arabia,” “The Future of Creative Placemaking,” “Creativity Needs You,” “Cardboard Furniture” and “A New Outdoors.” Participants will discuss ideas and existing projects in each field, and attempt to create their own product or project. Winners will have their designs featured by the relevant industry experts.

This article was first published in Arab News

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AI training program for young Saudis

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Time: 31 August, 2020

Dr. Abdullah bin Sharaf Al-Ghamdi. (SPA)
  • Saudi Arabia’s share of this advanced economy will be 12.4 percent by 2030

MAKKAH: Dr. Abdullah bin Sharaf Al-Ghamdi, president of the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority on Monday announced the launch of a training program in the field of data and artificial intelligence (AI) for 100 young men and women in the Makkah region.
He was speaking at the inaugural ceremony of the 5th Makkah Cultural Forum.
Al-Ghamdi said: “We are living in the era of data economy and AI. In 2015, the global data volume was 15 zettabytes, which increased to 50 zettabytes in 2020. In 2025m it will rise to 175 zettabytes.”
He said the global economy has an opportunity to exploit this huge volume of data. According to studies, Al-Ghamdi added, the Kingdom’s share of this advanced economy will be 12.4 percent by 2030.

This article was first published in Arab News

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Saudis win honor at physics competition

27/07/20

Photo/Social media
  • Saudi Physics Team had already one gold medal and another bronze medal in the 2019 Physics Olympics organized in Latvia

RIYADH: Five Saudi students representing the King Abdul Aziz and His Companions Foundation for Giftedness and Creativity (Mawhiba) have won four medals at a prestigious physics competition.
In its second consecutive participation at the European Physics Olympiad (EuPhO) 2020, Saudi Arabia, represented by Saudi high school students, won four medals as they participated in the virtual event organized this year by Romania and held between July 19 to July 26.
With this international achievement, the Kingdom raised the total number of gold and bronze medals and certificates of appreciation won to a total of six medals, as the Saudi Physics Team had already one gold medal and another bronze medal in the 2019 Physics Olympics organized in Latvia.

This article was first published in Arab News

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Digital library opens new chapter in Saudi Arabia

Time: 19 July, 2020

The library contains 446,044 digital books. (Shutterstock)
  • The library seeks to become the largest assembly of digital knowledge sources in the Middle East in terms of size and type of resources

RIYADH: The Saudi Digital Library at the Ministry of Education provides 169 databases in a range of academic fields to help researchers, students and others across the Kingdom.
Public and private universities, teachers and scholarship students are among those benefiting from the library’s digital services, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Saturday.
The library seeks to become the largest assembly of digital knowledge sources in the Middle East in terms of size and type of resources.
More than 65 entities have benefited from the service to date.
The library contains 446,044 digital books, 60,000 scientific journals, 6,548,350 research and conference papers, 5,224,410 university theses, and 3,061,669 scientific reports, in addition to 461,004 multimedia that includes images and scientific films in various disciplines, as well as more than 12,000,000 scientific subjects in information assets owned by the library.
Recent statistics show that there are more than 2.2 million beneficiaries of the library services.

This article was first published in Arab News

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Saudi team makes debut in cyberspace mathematical competition 2020

Time: 16 July, 2020

JEDDAH: For the first time Saudi Arabia is putting forward a team to take part in the Cyberspace Mathematical Competition (2020 CMC). It will be represented by the King Abdul Aziz and His Companions Foundation for Giftedness and Creativity (Mawhiba).
Sixty-nine teams from various countries are competing remotely in the two-day competition that kicked off on Monday.
Mawhiba, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, qualified a team of students to take part in 2020 CMC. The team members are Hamza Al-Sheikhi, Marwan Khayat and Thanaa Al-Haidari, Mohammed Al-Dubaisi and Nawaf Al-Ghamdi, Jude Bahwaini, Khaled Al-Ajran and Mohammed Al-Shehri.
The Saudi team underwent intensive training – 3,000 hours over four years – by experts and specialists to develop their skills
Each country will have a team of no more than eight people above the age of 19. Teams with six people must have at least one female member, and teams with eight people must have at least two female members.
The competition consists of eight essay-proof problems, in mathematics, algebra, combinatorics, engineering and number theory, held over two days. There will be four problems per day arranged in roughly increasing order of difficulty, with a 5-hour time limit.
CMC is a high-level international competition for high-school students, providing a rich opportunity for young math students in the world to deal with difficult and interesting issues.
All major countries are keen to participate due to the difficulty of the questions in this competition, which is close to the difficulty of the International Mathematics Olympiad (IMO). It is also considered one of the qualifying stations for the International Olympics.
Saudi teams will also be taking part remotely in the European Physics Olympiad and the International Chemistry Olympiad in the coming two weeks.
Mawhiba was keen to qualify the participating teams through its International Olympiads program to enable them to compete with students of the world during such international competitions.

This article was first published in Arab News

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Saudi university ranks fourth on international list of educational establishments

Time: 04 June, 2020

The achievement is something the Kingdom can be proud of said Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman. (AFP)
  • King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals rates highly based on number of utilities patents granted to it in the United States
  • University received 225 patents, topped only by the University of California, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Texas

DHAHRAN: Saudi Arabia’s King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals has been ranked fourth on a global list of 100 universities granted utility patents in the United States in 2019.
The annual list is compiled by the American organizations the National Academy of Inventors and the Intellectual Property Owners Association. KFUPM was granted 225 patents last year according to the list, which was topped by the University of California (631), followed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (355) and the University of Texas (276).
Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman, the Saudi minister of energy and chairman of KFUPM’s board of trustees, said the achievement reflects the university’s strategic methodology in the fields of research and innovation, and is something the Kingdom can be proud of.
He also thanked King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for their great support for education.

This article was first published in Arab News

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Saudi Education Ministry takes on distance learning of 6 million students in 10 days

28/03/20

Thirty-seven million students have tuned in to view Ein’s content on the internet, excluding those watching on TV. (SPA)

  • Saudi ministry has revealed that a new platform is being planned to support teachers and students interested in volunteering with health and logistics bodies to help battle the pandemic

JEDDAH: The Saudi Ministry of Education has been working relentlessly to ensure students have access to their education as the world battles the coronavirus pandemic.
Ibtisam Al-Shehri, the ministry’s spokesperson, said: “In 10 days, the ministry implemented distance learning to 6 million students. Students were offered five options by the ministry for virtual learning, accessible at any time and place.”
She added: “The ministry even made these educational tools available to those without internet access on TV through Ein channels.”
The students can gain access to their classes through 20 Ein channels on TV, Ein’s Youtube channel, Ein educational portal, future gate and unified education database. Thirty-seven million students have tuned in to view Ein’s content on the internet, excluding those watching on TV.
Al-Shehri said that students’ finals will be held as scheduled before coronavirus on Ramadan 10, but they are prepared for other emergencies with solutions such as virtual examinations in accordance with the educational calendar, virtual examinations for any given time as the current situation advances, virtual examinations for select grade levels and in-person examination for others.

FASTFACT

The students can gain access to their classes through 20 Ein channels on TV, Ein’s Youtube channel, Ein educational portal, future gate and unified education database. Thirty-seven million students have tuned in to view Ein’s content on the internet, excluding those watching on TV.

The ministry has also revealed that a new platform is being planned to support teachers and students interested in volunteering with health and logistics bodies to help battle the pandemic.
Meanwhile, King Abdul Aziz University (KAU) has launched an initiative to provide computers for students who do not have access to online distance learning.
KAU president, Abdulrahman bin Obaid Al-Youbi, said that more than 1,000 students had applied, and the first batch of devices had been distributed. Those wishing to apply should go to https://marz.kau.edu.sa/ShowSurveyLogin.aspx?SID=175235.

This article was first published in Arab News

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