Home Uncategorized Young enjoy their OUP Story Writing Competition win at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature 2024

Young enjoy their OUP Story Writing Competition win at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature 2024

by Belinda Breeze

The next generation of writing talent, the winners of the Oxford University Press (OUP) Story Writing Competition, were honoured at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature in a special prize giving ceremony.

The annual competition is a fixture of the academic calendar with almost 4,000 students from the UAE sending in their entries this year. Students were invited to write their stories prompted by this year’s competition theme ‘Beginnings’. The competition runs in Arabic and in English and is divided into age-specific categories: 11 and under, 12-14, 15-17 and 18-25. Each winner received a winner’s plaque, five copies of the book containing their original short stories and complimentary access to the Festival sessions.

Jennifer Duggan, Schools and Qualifications Regional Manager, Gulf, Oxford University Press, said: “At Oxford University Press, we are always looking for innovative ways to support the needs of learners. And our youngest learners have been supported by this competition for many years now. The works of short fiction that we got to read this year were of the highest standard and we hope that this competition and the published anthology serve as a launchpad for these budding writers.”

OUP winners – Arabic, 2024 (11 and under):

  • Hadi Ali Mohammad Alyamahi, Zayed Education Complex, Fujairah
  • Alma Baha Obaid, Albashair Private School, Abu Dhabi
  • Ali Mubarak Saleem Alkheeli, Al Mabade School, Abu Dhabi

OUP winners – Arabic, 2024 (12 – 14):

  • Tasareen Marissa Robin Alec, Dubai National School – Twar, Dubai
  • Aisha Khalid Altamimi, Albashair Private School, Abu Dhabi
  • Sela Rabih Salmo, Deira International School, Dubai

OUP winners – Arabic, 2024 (15 – 17):

  • Mariam Ayad Alkindi, School of Research Science US High School, Dubai
  • Fatima Ali Aleid Alsuwaidan, Al Shawamekh School, Abu Dhabi
  • Saif Majid Alshamsi, Dubai National School – Twar, Dubai

OUP winners – Arabic, 2024 (18 – 25):

  • Rahf Ziauddin Issa, Alhikmah Private School, Ajman
  • Usman Alzaabia Mir, Zayed University, Abu Dhabi
  • Rawdah Salem Ali Alqaidi, University of Sharjah, Sharjah

OUP winners – English, 2024 (11 and under):

  • Laranya Gupta, GEMS Modern Academy, Dubai and Hannah Rebecca Main Garcia, Nord Anglia International School, Dubai
  • Riddhi Sandeep, Al Diyafah High School, Dubai
  • Anashwara Rajesh Nair, Leaders Private School, Sharjah

OUP winners – English, 2024 (12- 14):

  • Alula Grace Marsh, South View School, Dubai
  • Shekinah Grace Prince, Deira International School, Dubai
  • Arshi Dawar, Ambasaddor International Academy, Dubai

OUP winners – English, 2024 (15-17):

  • Mara Machado-Mullett, Jumeirah English Speaking School, Dubai
  • David Fosman, Swiss International Scientific School, Dubai
  • Mohammed Zaahir Jaleel, GEMS Our Own English High School – Boys, Sharjah

OUP winners – English, 2024 (18-25):

  • Yassmeene Saleh, American University of Dubai, Dubai
  • Zahra Almahroon, Middlesex University, Dubai
  • Isabela Pedraz, Middlesex University, Dubai

Competition entries in Arabic were judged by Ayah Qasim, Ali Azzedine, Muhannad Al Akous, and Manea Al Maeni. The competition entries in English were judged by April Hardy, Kathleen Butti, Kathy Hoopmann and Rehan Khan.


Other initiatives celebrated at the Festival includes the Voices of Future Generations, which launches its fourth anthology of winning stories; the School Librarian of the Year; RGS Guildford Dubai Children’s Letter Writing Competition; Chevron Reader’s Cup; ENBD Poetry For All;Book in a Box and Digital Storytelling competitions; and the announcement of the third cohort of fellows for the First Chapter: ELF Seddiqi Writers’ Fellowship.


The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature Festival is held with Founding Partners Emirates Airline and the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), the Emirate’s dedicated authority for heritage, arts, and culture. It is held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai.