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The winning ‘Change Makers’ team members make their presentation. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: A Dubai school has started a scholarship in memory of one its students who passed away in early 2020.

GEMS Modern Academy now has the ‘Pranet Chawla Memorial Scholarship’, launched by Pranet Chawla’s parents in memory of their son. He was an active participant in the school’s annual Challenge Based Learning (CBL) competition.

Awarded to the project with the most potential for positive social impact, the scholarship provides the winning team with Dh5,000 to develop a prototype, as well as access to an industry expert to help them refine their solution.

‘Heart-warming experience’

Ashish Chawla, father of Pranet, said: “Although this year’s CBL initiative was a bittersweet experience for us, we left the final presentations feeling in awe of the sheer talent, determination, and hard work put into the programme. Watching our little boy’s schoolmates put in so much effort into honing complex skills like community impact assessments, conceptualisation, and product modelling was a heart-warming experience and we are excited to see what the coming batches have in store.”

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The scholarship was launched by Pranet Chawla’s parents in memory of their son. Image Credit: Supplied

‘The Change Makers’

The winners of this year’s CBL and scholarship were ‘The Change Makers’, a team of four grade six students who spent the last eight months developing their ‘NutroLife’ project — a health and well-being app aimed at helping users maintain a healthy lifestyle through practical everyday activities and behaviours. Despite being the youngest team in the CBL finals, the four students — Anoushka Arun Kumar, Ishita Tandon, Ryan Thomas Jacob and Yashvi Rathi — impressed the judges with their use of design thinking to develop their solution.

Nargish Khambatta

Nargish Khambatta, Principal of GEMS Modern Academy and Vice President — Education at GEMS Education, said: “CBL is aligned closely with our school vision statement, ‘Inspiring children to be positive change-makers’. Through this human-centred approach, we are able to introduce children to complex ideas, world-class concepts and still keep them rooted in empathy, respect and the authentic desire to make a positive difference in their circles of influence.”

Projects and solutions this year sought to address issues across environment, space, global health, e-safety, social needs, technology and mental health.