Awards and Achievements
Sheikha Fatima Award 2012
What does education mean to you………in one word?
In preparation for the 8th Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak Award for Excellence ceremony, the 31 scholarship winners from GEMS schools including myself were asked this question. Her Highness Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak pioneered women’s education in the UAE, she was instrumental in providing free State education to girls and ensuring adult literacy locally – she truly empowered women through her leadership and unwavering commitment to the cause of gender equality. The increase in the employment of women in Governmental sectors stands testimony to her campaign efforts. She has been a role model to thousands of women locally and internationally who drew inspiration from her persevering humanitarian efforts in various societal aspects. To be awarded the honour of the Sheikh Fatima Award for Excellence is a privilege.
During the award ceremony, H.E. Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research referred to Sheikha Fatima as the ‘Mother of the Nation’; His Excellency said “Her vision was to empower women everywhere and advance progress and excellence in the U.A.E.” He continued by saying that Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan the President of the U.A.E declared that “Educating the individual is this country’s most valuable investment.”
The award ceremony was hosted by Fiona Cottam, Principal and CEO of Jumeirah College and Chair of the Varkey GEMS Foundation Regional Management Committee; The Varkey GEMS Foundation is the philanthropic arm of GEMS Education established to improve the standards of education for underprivileged children. In 2011, the foundation became a member of the UNESCO High-Level Panel on Girls’ and Women’s Education for Empowerment and Gender Equality. VGF believe that when girls are educated, their capabilities develop and expand. Girls who learn would be able to benefit their families, communities and societies and most importantly they would alleviate themselves from poverty and profit from better life opportunities.
Education is something that we so often take for granted but has the potential to transform innumerable lives; it encompasses freedom, the ability to communicate, progress in knowledge and the capability to change your own future. To me, in one word, education is empowerment.
Young Musicians of the Gulf 2011
Ten students from years 11 - 13 competed at the highly prestigious ‘Young Musicians of the Gulf’ competition in February, accompanied by Mr Minchin. Sheerin Sobati, Daisy Preistley, Harrison King, Nicole Gaskin, Anthony Scott, Oliver Simpson and Juan Diego Chandra Dhas performed as soloists and made it through to the second round of the solo competition. Along with Piers Gladwin, Jack Radcliffe and Charlotte Simmonds, they competed in the ensemble category, singing in four – and sometimes eight – part harmony. We are very happy to announce that the Jumeirah College Vocal Ensemble were once again victorious, winning the highly coveted Ensemble Prize, and not only being awarded with the trophy, but also the opportunity to sing at the Grand Final.