A team of from Saudi Arabia have just won 27 major prizes at the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair in Washington. Saudi Arabia was represented by King Abdulaziz and His Companions Foundation for Giftedness and Creativity, and the Saudi Ministry of Education. This event contained more than 1800 people participating from more than 70 countries.
“The Kingdom is rich in its creative capacities, and every year we feel that we are diving deeper into our creative experiences. The mission and path were not paved with roses but resulted in exhausting and laborious work, supported by the material and human resources provided by the state,” said one of the students competing, “(KSA) has never spared any effort for its citizens, providing them with everything that distinguishes and intellectually equips them. This has kept them exceptional in international forums.”
The students present exceeded expectations truly with many of them securing first place positions in various fields. In the field of chemistry, student Faisal Al-Muhaish secured the first-place position for his project titled "Metal-organic framework-based electrocatalyst for highly efficient and affordable production of hydrogen from seawater." “The sons and daughters of this nation are its builders and pillars, and they play a significant and effective role in its economic development,” another student said to ArabNews, “Technological innovation and its dissemination are fundamental pillars of development and success aligned with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.”
Meanwhile, in the realm of environmental engineering, student Mohammed Al-Arfaj claimed the first prize for his project titled "Utilizing a contact liquid and a cost-effective freezing method to capture CO2 from fuel and air." The second-place prizes were awarded to individuals excelling in various fields. Taif Al-Hamdi achieved recognition in the energy sector, Latifa Al-Ghannam and Lynn Al-Melhem in energy as well, Zahra Al-Shabr in biomedicine and health sciences, Fatima Al-Arfaj in chemistry, Wissam Al-Qurshi in biomedical engineering, and Dima Marwahi in earth and environmental sciences.
Taking the third-place prizes were Ritaj Al-Sulami and Fajr Al-Khulaifi in the energy category, Fares Al-Yami in transitional medicine, Lian Norolli in environmental engineering, Abeer Al-Youssef in materials science, as well as Lian Al-Maliki and Nour Al-Hamad in plant sciences. Lastly, the fourth-place prizes were awarded to Maria Al-Qumsani in engineering technologies, Bandar Al-Barahim in robots and smart devices, Hanadi Arif in social and behavioral sciences, Maria Al-Ghamdi in environmental sciences, Tahani Ahmad in materials sciences, Dee Shujaa in earth and environmental sciences, and Yazan Al-Fulaih in plant sciences.
The team was greeted with open arms at the King Khalid International Airport as several officials from the government and private sectors were there. Mohammed Al-Arfaj spoke a bit with ArabNews and he exclaimed how excited he was for this feat, “What has been achieved is a national accomplishment, not just for us as students and institutions. This is the result of continuous work and relentless effort. We have always worked silently to attain these moments of recognition.
He also continued on to explain how this type of work has presented advanced scientific and knowledge models, and honorable examples that emphasize the importance of nurturing and supporting gifted individuals. Especially when they are competing globally and representing the Kingdom in international competitions and forums, reflecting the quality and progress of education.
He also stated that: “The projects that were submitted and won underwent supervision by a select group of judges, scientists, supervisors, and experts before being awarded.”
Al Arfaj continued on to explain how to explain how Mawhiba's supervisors always emphasize the importance of representing the Kingdom in the best possible way, contributing to its elevation, and working diligently for the prosperity of this country. He ended his inspiring talk by saying, “This success is the result of collective and institutional work contributed by thousands of educational supervisors and gifted student administrations.
What has been achieved is a triumph for Saudi talent, which has proven its worth and excellence on the international stage. The talented individuals demonstrated a high level of responsibility and creativity. They raised the pride of Saudis and contributed to the realization of an integrated knowledge system and the development of research-minded scientific thinkers.”