Celebrating the third edition of its popular educational initiative, Qatar Solar Technologies (QSTec), a member of Qatar Foundation, held the inauguration ceremony of the Shams Generation 3 exhibition at the Fire Station on 24 April 2017. Over 400 pieces of solar artwork are on display from 24 April to May 1, exhibiting the handicraft of students from over 20 schools and universities from across Qatar.
Since its launch in 2014, the Shams Generation initiative has reached over 16,000 students through its outreach programs, and its popularity amongst the youth is evident in the vast collection of creative artwork on display at the Fire Station museum. Notably, this year’s exhibition also features solar art and engineering collaboration between students studying at Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar and Texas A&M University at Qatar.
Now in its third year, this multi-award winning hands-on learning initiative was developed by QSTec, in collaboration with Qatar Museums, to address the knowledge gap in the region on the use of solar energy and its applications. Shams Generation educates the nation’s younger generation about the use of solar energy and the importance of environmental sustainability through an interdisciplinary approach to education combining science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics.
For the globally integrated solar company, QSTec, this year’s edition of Shams Generation is driven by its motivation to address a critical concern: global warming. Commenting on the third instalment of Shams Generation, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of QSTec, Dr. Khalid K. Al Hajri said: “One of the most fundamental issues faced by all countries across the planet is effectively combating climate change—we need to preserve our environment for future generations and successfully reduce greenhouse gas emissions. To achieve this, education is essential, and to this end, we must all play a proactive role in shouldering our respective responsibilities to protect our environment.
“QSTec developed Shams Generation as a part of an integrated strategy for solar energy innovation to take root amongst the youth of the nation. Through our initiative, we have fostered an environment where students, from an early age, are encouraged to develop creative ideas, solutions and applications for solar energy. We all need to be more sustainable and by familiarizing our youth with environmental protection, sustainability and solar energy, QSTec is playing a vital role in our protecting our planet.”
In the lead-up to the ongoing Shams Generation 3 exhibition, each participating school hosted in-school workshops, during which students created artwork using solar-powered kits and recycled materials. The best solar artworks were then shortlisted and are presently being showcased at the Annex Room gallery at Fire Station. The response from the students to this unique learning experience has been overwhelmingly positive. “The only thing matching the sun’s energy at the opening of our Grade 5 solar art exhibition was the enthusiasm of the students,” said Qatar Academy teacher Beckie Dobbs. “My students have participated in the Shams Generation initiative for the last three years and the creativity that is displayed by our students using solar art and technologies is amazing. Their enthusiasm to learn about solar energy and sustainability is obvious, and they can’t wait to show their creations to their parents and friends.”
The Shams Generation solar art exhibition displays art creations by students, ranging from 8 years of age through to university level, and the exhibit is open to the public until May 1.
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