Dubai: Young students of a brand new school, GEMS Cambridge International Private School Sharjah, were thrilled to take an exclusive tour of the state-of-the-art printing facility of Al Nisr Publishing, publisher of leading UAE daily Gulf News, on Tuesday in Dubai.
Grade four and five pupils of the British curriculum school, which opened in September, toured various sections of the facility, learning how the newspaper is printed, from the time the page plates are set to the time the paper is printed, folded and cut, ready for distribution.
The students were guided by Reynold Robert, production manager at Al Nisr Publishing, who explained the various steps of the process and answered students’ questions.
Around 140 students of the school, in separate groups, have now been treated to the behind-the-scenes tour over four weeks, with the final two groups visiting on Tuesday.
Albie Huyser, the school’s principal and CEO, said: “At school, we teach children about real-life and careers that they can join. We’ve realised that by just talking and learning about it, that is not enough. So we want our students to have real-life experiences.”
She added: “We’re so grateful to Gulf News for giving us this opportunity where students can see how newspapers are made. It makes them excited, they are so eager now to know more about that process and hopefully one day, our students will also be journalists, working in a printing press and running an amazing newspaper like Gulf News.”
Grade four students said they were inspired by the tour to learn more about newspapers.
Adham Mohammad said he was intrigued by how the different newspaper inks work together to produce colours. “The [printing facility] is actually really impressive, I think this must have cost a fortune.”
Yassen Munir was impressed by the size of the facility. “Instead of learning about it, seeing it in real life makes it fun. I like the robots, how the machines work and seeing how many papers are there,” he said.
Zayed Mostafa said: “It was a big experience for all of us and I wish we see more things about this place. I really enjoyed it and I appreciate how you [Gulf News] are working so hard for this.”
Alzena Nayanveedu “loved everything”, saying “I wish I could be here forever”. She added that the presentations helped her learn more about newspapers, saying perhaps one day she would like to work in one.
Sheillie Chaudhary, who was coordinating the visit, said: “It was a privilege and honour for GEMS Cambridge International Private School, Sharjah to have the amazing opportunity of visiting Gulf News Printing Press over a period of four weeks. Our Grade 4 and 5 students experienced first hand the working of both traditional and modern ways of printing. Students were delighted to see how a robot was programmed to carry out different tasks around the printing press . We are very grateful to Gulf News for giving up their time and making this visit an unforgettable experience for our students.”
Mohamad Abdel Aal, sales manager of commercial printing at Al Nisr Publishing, said: “The children have been left amazed by the tour. This was a new, enriching experience for them to learn from a behind-the-scenes perspective. It was also a great opportunity for us to host these lovely students.”