The 2013 Qatar National Robot Olympiad will be held from 1 to 2 November 2013 at the Doha Exhibition Centre with more than 200 teams and 500 students expected to take part.

The National Olympiad and associated schools programme are supported by Maersk Oil Qatar and the College of the North Atlantic–Qatar (CNA-Q) under the patronage of the Supreme Education Council (SEC) and with the support of Qatar Petroleum (QP).

The Deputy Managing Director of Maersk Oil Qatar, Sheikh Faisal Al Thani, said:

We are delighted by the response of teachers and students to this year’s GO ROBOT programme. The Qatar Petroleum’s valuable support has helped to dramatically increase the number of coaches, students and schools involved. Maersk Oil operates one of the most complex oil fields in the world at Al Shaheen. Our hope is that by developing an early interest in science, technology and engineering, some of these students will be future leaders in Qatar’s energy industry.’

‘The skills developed during the GO ROBOT programme not only help the hundreds of students involved but also the teachers who bring these new skills to their classrooms, helping thousands of students across Qatar in the process. We are confident that this programme will continue to thrive and make a real difference to students and education in Qatar.’

A record number of students from across Qatar have signed up to compete in this year’s event, which is part of the GO ROBOT schools programme that aims to foster interest and develop skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The GO ROBOT programme, formerly known as the Schools Robotics Programme, supports the Qatar National Vision 2030 and is now in its second year.

The Assistant Director of communications and Media office, Jaber Al Shawi, said:

Enabling the GO ROBOT programme in Qatar as well as encouraging students to engage in the fields of science, engineering and technology bring them new added-value skills at school. It is in the interest of all parties in the educational process, including student and teacher alike, to receive training in various activities relevant to this programme.’

The Olympiad will see teams compete in a range of demanding challenges using LEGO™ MindStorms™ robots for the chance to represent Qatar at the World Robot Finals in Jakarta, Indonesia, later in the year. The Olympiad is the culmination of six months of GO ROBOT activities. Since April more than 300 teachers have attended intensive robotics training sessions at CNA-Q and hundreds of robotics kits have been donated to schools across Qatar.  In total, over 1,500 students have been involved in the programme since it began in 2012.

The Dean of Information Technology at CNA-Q and the World Robot Olympiad representative in Qatar, Dr Theodore Chiasson, said:

When they start using the robotics kits, students get creative ideas of what they want their robot to do. At that point, they are hooked, and they are eager to learn the science and engineering concepts that can enhance their robot’s performance. Their creativity starts to drive the learning process, and they are more engaged in their studies.’

For more information, visit ‘GO ROBOT QATAR’s Facebook page.