Gateway College Featured in Microsoft’s Annual Flagship Education Event
Chairman, Gateway College, Dr. Harsha Alles and Team Leader –Change Management, Surani Maithripala, were among the speakers invited to present at the Microsoft Education Exchange (E2), in which Microsoft brings together the World’s Change Makers – both leaders and educators every year. The discussion based on Leading Transformation: Navigating Change, highlighted how Gateway College manages change and the mechanisms put in place to handle unexpected challenges such as the pandemic.
Dr. Alles and Maithripala were joined in the discussion by Dina Ghobashy, Business Strategy Leader, K12 School Leadership and Programmes of Microsoft; and Emily Bell, President of the Georgia Association for Managers in Education Systems and K-12 IMS Global board member.
Gateway College also won the 1st Runner-up award in the prestigious ‘Tech for Good Challenge,’ under the Creative Communicator category at the same event. This challenge is open to Microsoft Innovative Educator (MIE) Experts and Microsoft Showcase Schools that inspire and engage their students to make a difference in their communities and the world.
Tech for Good equips students with the digital, emotional, collaborative and cognitive skills needed to be future ready. Ashra Shibly and her students of the ICT Society of Gateway College Dehiwala won the award for their Digital Art project on the ‘Beauty of Mother Lanka.’
In addition to being a Microsoft Showcase School and an SLT EdTech Specialist School, Gateway College follows a holistic approach and strives to add the ‘A’ into STEM education by incorporating Arts on par with Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. The artistic experience fuels the creative imagination and provides students with the ability to shape and define their identity and self-expression.
Being cognizant of the role of art in digital media, and the rapidly growing opportunities available, the Gateway Schools introduced a Digital Art Competition and exhibition within the school network. The themes of the competition are decided with the intention of inculcating Sri Lankan values and culture in a pluralistic setting and promoting a sense of belonging to the alma mater and the motherland.
In 2018, the theme was “Breaking Free – in commemoration of the 70th Independence Day of Sri Lanka.” The slogan in 2019 was ‘Flora and Fauna of Sri Lanka,’ and in 2020 was ‘Sri Lanka in 2025.’
This year’s event that was organised by the teachers and students of the ICT Society of Gateway College Dehiwala was ‘Beauty of Mother Lanka.’ Through Flipgrid, the young artistes were also able to record a video describing their art. This meant that the audience was able to understand the ideas behind their creations better. This was a novel way of combining technology and art to develop transferable, 21st century skills.