The First Students’ Conference for Scientific Research was held at Sultan Qaboos University on 10 April under the patronage of H.E. Sheikh Salim bin Mustahil Al Mashani, Advisor at the Diwan of Royal Court. The conference featured 30 student research projects, 15 each from science and humanities colleges, presented by students from respective colleges.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Rahma bint Ibrahim Al Mahrooqi, SQU Deputy Vice Chancellor for Postgraduate Studies & Research, said that research is acknowledged in the university’s Strategic Plan as being closely tied to achievements in the other key domains of creativity and innovation, undergraduate and postgraduate learning and teaching, and community engagement. “As such, SQU places a strong emphasis on the value of research across all levels of the university, and seeks to encourage research engagement among students and staff through every means at its disposal”.
The DVC further said that one way in which SQU encourages research at both the undergraduate and graduate levels is through the annual Students’ Research Conference. “One of the primary goals of this conference is to highlight some of the many opportunities and benefits that engaging in research at any stage of an academic career can bring. In addition to promoting a culture of research and innovation among the student body, the conference also provides a showcase for the best student research and researchers at the university, thereby offering a clearer picture of the student-lead research that is taking place here”.
Dr. Rahma added that building a rich and deep culture of research and innovation across Oman is one of the most important challenges – and exciting opportunities – that the Sultanate faces in the coming years. “By helping our students at all levels to become active researchers, we can be assured that SQU, as Oman’s premiere research institute, is in the best position to help transform Oman into a knowledge-based, innovation-driven society”, she concluded.
Representing the participating students, Asma Saif Bani Uraba, a PhD student from the College of Medicine & Health Sciences, lauded the efforts of the University authorities in organizing a research conference for exclusively for students, which has helped the students develop their research skills, gain practical experience in conducting research under the guidance of their academic supervisors and the conference organizers.