Digital Innovation

Schools in the UAE take on the challenge of designing, building, and racing electric cars

  • Mar 22, 2023
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 Schools in the UAE take on the challenge of designing, building, and racing electric cars

As part of their studies, students in the UAE will be challenged to design, assemble, and race electric cars, paving the way for them to pursue careers in motorsport and electric vehicle engineering. Annually, over 10,000 students from Europe, Asia, and the United States participate in the Greenpower programme, which leverages the thrill and excitement of motorsport to help them progress in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

This hands-on learning initiative enables children from primary school to university to develop the required skills to pursue motorsport careers, work as engineers, or in team management or other major roles. Pole Position, a Dubai-based automotive events and motorsports consultancy, and Greenpower Education Trust have collaborated to launch this challenge in the UAE, beginning with 41 GEMS Education schools.

Schools that are taking part in this challenge will form teams to design and assemble electric kit cars provided by the UK-based charity trust, which has run the programme for over 20 years. Teams with three drivers and a support crew will eventually race the electric cars in the Formula 24 category for 11-16-year-olds at the Dubai Autodrome.

Ryan Trutch, founder and CEO of Pole Position, expressed his enthusiasm to collaborate with GEMS Education, which has committed to involving 41 of their schools in the Greenpower programme. According to him, this collaboration will develop a good appetite for upcoming motorsports activities among the students, and gain encouragement from educators to continue motorsport-related activities. Trutch mentioned that they are working with GEMS Education to finalise the programme prior to actually launching it this year with the help of corporate sponsorship as part of the CSR and ESG activities of companies. Also, with 40% of Greenpower participants being female, they would like to work towards creating a more diverse workforce in science and engineering for the future.

More than 2,500 teams have participated in the Greenpower program, which has been featured in a report by The Hamilton Commission. From September onward, Greenpower will teach students basic mechanics and electrics, which will help them build electric kit cars for Formula 24 racing.

Matthew Tompkins, Director of Student Employability, said that they are excited to be a part of this project as they continue to encourage sustainability among all GEMS Education students. This initiative enriches the efforts of their schools and builds on the commitment of their transportation provider, STS Group. He believes that the lessons students learn from participating in initiatives like this will influence the decisions they make as future leaders.

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