The students were handed certificates and trophies at a crowded luncheon ceremony attended by SAGIA Gov. Amr Al-Dabbagh and Chairman of Walt Disney International Andy Bird.
“The aim is to encourage a love of innovation through project-based learning and to provide more opportunities for students to present and display the results of their scientific investigations,” said Al-Dabbagh, who was speaking on the sidelines of the event.
He said that the students’ felicitation comes within the framework of “SAGIA’s Most Competitive Youth Initiative” (MCYI). Microsoft, Cisco and Edge of Arabia sponsored the three MCYI, introduced for the first time at GCF 2011. The three categories for which SAGIA gave awards include “Importance of Innovation and Competitiveness,” “Technology” and “Art & Creativity.” The main speaker at the award ceremony was Bird.
Speaking during the award-giving ceremony, Bird gave a genesis of Disney, which has emerged as a leading diversified international family entertainment and media enterprise. He said that Disney had an R & D department, which has 289 patents to its credit until today. Bird pointed out that Walt Disney International has to its credit several innovations, while increasing penetration of Disney’s existing businesses in developed markets such as Western Europe and Japan.
“What started with a synchronized cartoon unit in 1928 has now emerged as a major company in entertainment segment,” said Bird, who works with all of Disney’s business unit leaders around the world. He also congratulated the winners of the MCYI prizes this year. To this end, it is important to note that Rayan Al-Dafas, a 15-year old Saudi boy, who received first prize, seeks to develop a GPS device that would help reduce traffic accidents and locate motorists lost in the desert.
The top three winners in each category include Rayan Al-Dafas (Zulfi), Nabil Al-Zahrani (Riyadh) and Toman Al-Thani (Alkhobar) in the Importance of Innovation and Competitiveness. Arwa Res, Rawan Al-Harbi, A.R. Al-Assaf, A. Sharawi and Omar (Riyadh) shared third position for the Technology Competition award while Muhammad ‘Anggi’ Makki (Jeddah), Ahmad Al-Amoudi (Jeddah) and Adwa Al-Mubarak (Riyadh) were the top three winners in the Arts & Creativity category.
Al-Dabbagh and the sponsors from each category jointly presented the awards. The winners of MCYI were dubbed as ‘outstanding leaders’ and the winning students will be taken on a journey to the UK and North America to further develop their skills. The winning paintings and other artworks were displayed at the GCF 2011 venue.

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