GEMS Education and Singularity University organises 1st annual Global Innovation Challenge

Press release
Published February 6th, 2017 - 07:11 GMT
During the event
During the event

Over 4,000 students, families, investors, and inventors mingled and learned from one another at the 1st annual Global Innovation Challenge, run by GEMS Education and Silicon Valley’s Singularity University on February 4th at Wellington Academy Silicon Oasis.

The Global Innovation Challenge invited students from around the world to submit working prototypes to address our most pressing challenges. Students invented a myriad of solutions using future-focused technologies such as 3D printing, robotics, nanotechnology – as well as skills such as data science and coding. Categories included disaster resilience, food scarcity, prosperity, environmental sustainability, healthcare and more.

Projects included 3D printed shelters and schools; integrated systems to supporting care of refugees; a digital social network to support mental health; and an Internet of Things based irrigation system for agriculture in arid regions.

The day itself was a celebration of innovation and creativity which featured free workshops on robotics, 3D printing and Arduino programing as well as keynote addresses, in addition to an opportunity for visitors to engage showcased student projects in a hands-on manner. Guest speakers included senior leadership from KHDA, GEMS Education, and the US Consulate.

GEMS Innovation, Research, and Development Innovation Leader, Christine Nasserghodsi, shared: “Our students began thinking about their projects during hack-a-thons held during the UAE Week of Innovation. The students used design thinking, a human centred approach to innovation popular with leading technology companies to have better understanding of the challenge categories and the people affected. While we always expect great things from our students, I’ve been impressed by the level compassion and insight evident in their work.”

Prizes were awarded in each category to solutions in both the junior (age 13 and below) and senior (age 14 and above) category. Up to twelve senior projects will be given seed funding and mentorship and select projects will be presented at the annual Singularity Summit in Silicon Valley, California.

Background Information

GEMS Education

In 1959, two teachers, KS Varkey and his wife Mariamma, arrived in Dubai. 

At the time, Dubai was a burgeoning trade centre on the Arabian Gulf. The Varkey family had left Kerala, India to seek a better life for their family. What they found was a real need to educate children arriving in the city from around the world.

Their son, Sunny, added a visionary’s ambition to a practitioner's experience. From simple roots in a family of teachers, GEMS Education, is today an international company with schools and education services across the Middle East. We still share the same mission - to provide a quality education to everyone.

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