Foundation series

Qatar Foundation brings genomic science to students

Secondary school teachers participating in a workshop organized by the Qatar Genome Programme.

Doha: In a series of workshops titled “Precision Medicine and Genomics”, secondary school biology teachers learned about precision medicine and ways to engage students in the field of precision medicine and genomics.

The workshop was organized in partnership with the Ministry of Education and Higher Education and the Qatar Genome Program (QGP), a member of the Qatar Foundation, with the aim of increasing the knowledge of teachers in the ministry on sciences related to precision medicine, given that Qatar is one of the world’s leading countries in this field.

The workshops presented the latest developments in genomic sciences and their currently available applications to enable teachers to share this knowledge with their students in addition to the biology curriculum which introduces students to modern scientific concepts and developments, including genomics.

The Ministry of Education and Higher Education of the State of Qatar has given special attention to genomics — the concept of human genome has been included in the biology curriculum at secondary level, and some genomics concepts have also been introduced in primary and preparatory. steps. The program also includes a description of the most important techniques used in genetic engineering and genomic sciences.

By introducing students to genomic sciences and encouraging them to pursue in the field of medicine, medical genetic counseling and genetic engineering, the Ministry of Education and Higher Education of the State of Qatar aims to provide qualified skills and expertise to the Qatari labor market.

Dr Said Ismail, Director of the Qatar Genome Programme, said: “Advancing precision medicine requires diverse disciplines, and I am convinced that the next generation wants to engage in the latest sciences that qualify them to be at the forefront. cutting edge technology. scientific progress. Teachers are the most important influencers on the thoughts of their students, and ministry teachers are very professional and aware of modern and advanced trends in this regard. »

On the part of the participants, Muhammad Rashid from Al Jamiliya Co-educational School for Boys said: “It was a very interesting workshop; it reinforced the notions of genetics known to teachers. And we have been impressed by the efforts in Qatar to genomically map the country with the aim of delivering personalized healthcare to every patient.

Another participating teacher, Asmaa Sami from Al-Resala Girls’ Secondary School, mentioned some of the benefits of attending the workshop. She said: “We hope that a series of educational tours will be organized for high school students to raise awareness of the vital role of genomics and precision medicine.”

Dima Darwish, Head of Science Education at QGP, said: “Genomics has become the hot topic of conversation, and in recent years Qatar’s contribution has been significant and distinguished. Various research projects are underway, we are publishing in high-impact journals, and bedside implementation is underway.

“We need the next generation to understand the importance of precision medicine and to work on the ground in Qatar and the region. To this end, they will benefit from the guidance and encouragement of their teachers and contribute to improving health care in the region.

In this first round, secondary teachers from 50 schools in Qatar participated in the genomics and precision medicine workshops, and preparations are underway for the second round of workshops for secondary teachers.