PCS Middle East
The Middle Eastern Opportunity
Over the past seven years, PCS Edventures international division has been conducting business and creating lasting partnerships in the Middle East. PCS has established robotics competitions, outreach programs, numerous trainings, and developed a network of resources to support educational efforts throughout the area. In 2014 PCS completed a $133K Science Center Training Contract in Saudi Arabia by partnering with industry experts in science center consulting. This contract culminated in a two week training focused on setting up hands-on learning labs and science center operation practices. In addition, PCS also developed a unique outreach program designed specifically to target the young populace of Saudi Arabia. This $740K Outreach Contract included the development of robotics, aerospace, physics, astronomy, health and fitness as well as a supply of hands-on STEM educational materials. This initiative travels to malls and schools in six large vans to put on exciting demonstrations to get Saudi children excited to learn about science and boost recruitment efforts for the Saudi Science Centers.
PCS Edventures also received a $1MM Content Contract, in July 2014, to develop KG-12 STEM after school programs structured to facilitate non-formal STEM education. These after school programs, which will focus primarily on experiential hands-on learning, are intended to inspire students and provide tangible links to more formal classroom experiences. Developed similarly to the EdventuresLab after school programs, these labs will be thematically designed around the following areas: chemistry, physics, life sciences, computer science, aerospace, robotics, energy, materials science, and both civil and mechanical engineering. PCS is developing a launch plan and operational strategies of these centers in partnership with leading industry science center consulting experts. The Content Contract included necessary training, in which PCS send industry experts in hands-on learning and STEM education to Saudi Arabia the second week of December (2014). The total project is expected to be completed by summer of 2015.
In 2007, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia launched a reform initiative called The King Abdullah Project for the Development of Public Education. This $2.4 billion effort aimed to change the country’s student education by encouraging students to analyze and problem solve rather than learn by rote. The initiative also calls for the training of 500,000 teachers, creation of new school facilities, promotion of STEM education, and an expansion of extra-curricular activity opportunities. PCS Edventures is an integral part of planning and consulting this education initiative. PCSV reported $219,711 international revenue received during the second quarter of FY2015 (July-Sept), which was directly gained from the education initiative of Saudi Arabia. In addition to these growing opportunities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, PCS is also working closely with partners in Egypt to provide comprehensive STEM training and establish pilot programs at the elementary and middle school levels.
PCS in the Middle East Quick Facts:
- In FY2015, PCS was awarded their largest international contract for $1MM to deliver KG-12 STEM after school programs and learning framework to facilitate non-formal, experiential hands-on education to supplement the more formal education experience of classrooms.
- In 2014, PCS secured contracts that represented potential revenue of over $700K for training and STEM consulting. A portion of these contracts were fulfilled in FY2014, and more is to be fulfilled during FY2015.
- In FY2013, PCS delivered over $100K in STEM education consulting in the Middle East region.
- PCS consulting in FY2013 Q1 was in support of a remarkable vision for creating a nationwide network of science centers to support STEM education. Read the Arab News article here to learn more about the nationwide initiative.
- Saudi Arabia announced their largest education budget ever in December of 2012 of 204 Billion SAR (USD $54 Billion). Read the Arab News article.
- In January of 2011, PCS received an order for implementing KG and robotics education programs into five schools in an Egyptian pilot program.
- In 2010 PCS hosted an International Robotics competition, held in Boise, Idaho that included two participating teams from Saudi Arabia.
- In 2008 PCS trained teachers from 50 Saudi schools in hands-on, experiential learning practices using robotics and other materials.
- In 2007 PCS facilitated a Gulf International Robotics competition that included competitors from Oman, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE.
Currently there are 5.94 million students from KG to Grade 12 enrolled in the Saudi Arabian education system attending over 32,000 schools. In addition the population of Saudi Arabia is growing at a rate of about 2.5% each year, with 40% of the population under the age of 15. With this growing number of young Saudi students, current education initiatives, and possibility for future contracts, PCS believes that it has established credibility and demonstrated performance in the Middle East, an emerging market opportunity. PCS continues to develop new relationships in the region as well as compete for additional projects with existing customers.