In a jubilant celebration of scientific and technological prowess, Kinsale Community School emerged as a shining star in the 60th edition of the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition, held at the RDS from January 11th to 14th. This landmark event witnessed over 1,100 student finalists from across Ireland, with the inauguration by President Michael D. Higgins highlighting the paramount importance of science and technology in building a just, peaceful, and sustainable world.
Kinsale Community School achieved remarkable success by qualifying a total of 11 projects for the exhibition, with 30 students representing the school. President Higgins, addressing the young scientists, emphasised the impact they can have as concerned and contributing global citizens through their scientific contributions.
At the heart of this success was the recognition received by Ian Cullinane, who was awarded the Geological Survey of Ireland Award for his outstanding project titled "SkySci: AI-Powered Environmental Monitoring and Photography Drone."
Category Awards showcased the exceptional talent from Kinsale Community School:
· 1st Junior Group (Social and Behavioural Sciences) - Claire Linehan, Aoife Ferguson, and AIsling Lynch for their project titled: An investigation into why women’s sport takes runner up place in the eyes of spectators compared to men’s sport.
· 1st Junior Individual (Health and Wellbeing) - Ronan Moloney for his project on the Assessment of the impact of a skill specific plyometrics plan on a juvenile GAA team
· 3rd Junior Group (Technology) - Etaoin Healy Bastow and Eva Grace for their project: Wound Protection Cage · 2nd Junior Individual (Health and Wellbeing) - Emily Bertoletti for her project on The Effect on Health and Wellbeing of Climate Change, Awareness amongst people living in Ireland and their level of engagement with Climate Action – A Statistical Analysis.
· Lily Cahill from Kinsale Community School also received a Highly Commended award in the Social and Behavioural Sciences category for her project on Imaginary Friendships.
Reflecting on the achievements, Kinsale Community School Principal, Mr. Fergal McCarthy expressed immense pride in the students and their commitment to scientific excellence. The school's rich history at the BT Young Scientist Exhibition has played a pivotal role in fostering a culture of innovation and curiosity among its students.
Speaking at the awards ceremony, Minister for Education Norma Foley TD said, “Meeting students exhibiting projects and witnessing the innovation, creativity and attention to detail which they have applied to their research has been a great honour. As the 2022 results of the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) show, 15-year-olds in Ireland significantly outperform many of their counterparts across the OECD in science. The BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition continues to demonstrate the breadth of what’s possible in our world when open and inquiring minds ask questions and explore new opportunities and solutions. Along with the Government, I am committed to continuing to promote uptake in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) in our schools for the benefit of all learners.”
As the BT Young Scientist Exhibition marks its 60th year, Kinsale Community School stands as a beacon of success within the local and national scientific community. The school's achievements underscore its commitment to nurturing the next generation of scientific leaders, contributing significantly to the rich scientific tapestry of Ireland.
Photo: Ian Cullinane. Credit: KCS