2014 press releases


BT Ireland has today announced that it has broken all previous records for entries to the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition. The 50th competition, taking place in January 2014, is set to be the biggest ever with 2,000 ideas submitted by 4,418 students from across 32 counties. 50 per cent of secondary schools in the Republic of Ireland have entered a project for the milestone year. BT, which has organised the exhibition for 14 years, has significantly evolved the exhibition every year to engage as many young people as possible in the key areas of science, technology, engineering, maths, innovation and commercialisation. Major progress has been made over the past fourteen years including: a tripling of project entries; a new commercialisation boot camp; a financial bursary to assist participating schools; and a growing array of science and technology exhibits, events and special acts that attract thousands of visitors. The 2014 entries at a glance: 2,000 entries received, spanning 32 counties 4,418 students 379 schools represented Number of entries per category: o Biological & Ecological Sciences: 574 o Chemical, Physical & Mathematical Sciences: 350 o Social & Behavioural Sciences: 701 o Technology: 375 The Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn T.D., said: “In its 50th year, the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition is breaking new records with figures up for participating students and schools, as well as an increase in entries in key categories such as chemical, physical and mathematical sciences. The importance of investment in research and innovation to our economy cannot be underestimated, and I commend everyone involved in the BT Young Scientist & Technology... read more

Colonel Chris Hadfield to touch down at the RDS this January

: It’s that time of year again! The Main Hall in Dublin’s RDS will welcome some of the brightest young minds in the country as the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition returns in January. This year, Colonel Chris Hadfield, the Canadian astronaut made famous by his interstellar rendition of David Bowie’sSpace Oddity, will be making a very special appearance at the exhibition on Saturday, 11th January to sign copies of his new book, An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth. The BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition, hosted by TG4’s Roisin Ni Thomain and broadcaster Aidan Power, will be open to the public from Thursday 9th– Saturday 11th January 2014. Tickets are available at the door costing €6 for students, €12 for adults and €25 for a family pass. The exhibition is a great family day out packed full of fun, creative inventions, interactive education and live shows including World of Robots, The Science Museum ‘SuperCool’ Show, 3D Theatre – 50 years of space exploration and TITAN The Robot. World renowned coding club Coder Dojo will also feature at the exhibition with workshops teaching creative problem solving skills and practical creative skills to students. In addition to the 550 student projects on display, there are four more areas packed full of science and technology exhibits making it a must-see event. The annual BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition attracts over 40,000 people each year making it one of the largest events of its kind in Europe. For information, log onto www.btyoungscientist.com or check out http://www.facebook.com/BTYSTE, follow on twitter at http://twitter.com/btyste or call 1800 924 362 or from Northern... read more

BT unveils new perpetual Trophy for the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition

19 year old Graphic Design student, Jowita Rogalska honoured for her innovative creativity. BT Ireland has today unveiled the stunning new perpetual trophy which will be presented to the 50th winner of the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition next week at the RDS. In celebration of the 50th anniversary of what is now a cornerstone of the Irish educational calendar, BT commissioned a nationwide search for a creative new design demonstrating innovation and technology for the new trophy. Students from Institutes of Technology across Ireland as well as regional colleges in Northern Ireland were invited to submit their designs for the new trophy, with the overall winner selected by world renowned artist and lead judge, Graham Knuttel. The competition received 87 entries from across the island of Ireland. Jowita Rogalska, from the Southern Regional College in Lurgan was selected as the overall winner of the competition when her design entitled ‘genius is found in simplicity’ captured the imagination of the judging panel, who along with Graham included Colm O’Neill, CEO, BT Ireland and Dr Tony Scott, co-founder of the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition. Speaking about the award Jowita Rogalska commented, ‘I was shocked but absolutely thrilled to learn that my design had been selected as the new trophy for the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition. It’s a huge honour that my trophy design will be presented to the 50th winners next week. I wanted to create a trophy design that demonstrated innovative flair but also sense of simplicity so I experimented with a number of ideas before arriving at my finished design‘genius is found in... read more

Paul Clarke is Announced Overall Winner of the 50th BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition

The winner of the 50th BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition has been announced.  Fifth year student Paul Clarke, aged 17,from St Paul’s College, Raheny in Dublin has taken home the top prize for his project entitled, “Contributions to cyclic graph theory”. The announcement was made in the BT Arena at Dublin’s RDS this evening by Ruairi Quinn, TD Minister for Education and Skills and Colm O’Neill, CEO, BT Ireland.  Paul was entered in the senior section of the Chemical, Physical and Mathematical Sciences category. Paul was presented with a cheque for €5,000, the opportunity to represent Ireland at the 26th European Union Young Scientist competition taking place in September and a brand new trophy. As this year’s winner, Paul will also win a once in a lifetime trip to Silicon Valley in California, home to some of the world’s biggest technology corporations, to meet BT’s Innovation team, and will enjoy a hosted tour of leading enterprises and meet business leaders from the world of science and technology. Colm O’Neill, CEO, BT Ireland said, “When we set out last year to plan for the 50th BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition we wanted to make sure that this was our most exceptional event to date. I’m delighted to say that it has exceeded all of our expectations. Over the past three days we have had some of Ireland’s brightest, most creative and positive young people astound us with their ideas for a better future and we have been greatly impressed by the high standard of these entries. He added, “Over the years the exhibition has proven to be an... read more

BT Young Scientist Business Bootcamp 2014

The BT Young Scientist Business Bootcamp 2014 begins today at University College Dublin (UCD). Now in its fifth year, the four-day innovation and skills camp welcomes 29 second-level students from across Ireland who demonstrate an ability to understand how and why a simple idea can be developed into a commercially-viable enterprise. The students were selected in January from over 1,200 secondary school students who competed in this year’s BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition. The Bootcamp, delivered in partnership with UCD, takes place at NovaUCD and aims to bridge the gap between education and business for students who demonstrate entrepreneurial flair and business acumen. Shay Walsh, Managing Director, Business, BT Ireland, commented, “Our mission with the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition is to foster innovation and creativity in Ireland’s young people through education. With BT Business Bootcamp, we aim to take this one step further by giving the selected students the practical skills and know-how to take their commercially viable ideas to the next level. Over the past four years we have been hugely impressed with the level of business acumen that the students gain through this programme and I have no doubt that our latest group of talented young people will equally excel. I look forward to seeing their ideas develop throughout the week and I wish them all the very best of luck.” Professor Orla Feely, UCD Vice-President for Research, Innovation and Impact said, “University College Dublin is delighted to be working in partnership with BT once again this year to deliver the BT Business Bootcamp. This Bootcamp is helping to embed a culture of entrepreneurship... read more


WINNERS OF THE 2014 BT YOUNG SCIENTIST BUSINESS BOOTCAMP ANOUNCED  Students triumph at BT’s innovation & skills camp at University College Dublin Dublin, Thursday 6th March 2014: The winners of the 2014 BT Young Scientist Business Bootcamp, a four-day intensive commercialisation skills programme held at NovaUCD and UCD Science have been announced today. Alex Gallagher Lynch, aged 18 from St Nathys College, Roscommon, Anna McEvoy aged 17 from Our Ladys College Drogheda, Cut Aina Hannisa, aged 16 from Regina Mundi College, Cork, Eamonn Sweeney aged 17 from Jesus & Mary Secondary School, Sligo and Emma Kirwan aged 16 from Tullamore College, Offaly  won ‘best overall team’ for their work on the  project ‘Addressing the issue of unnoticed road signs’, the project set out to design and engineer a cost effective solution to the issue of unnoticed road signs. Evaluated by a judging panel from business, media and academia, the team was selected for its significant progress over the course of the innovation and skills programme. Katie Culligan, aged 17 from Dominican College Drumcondra was recognised as the best individual student. All of the winners will enjoy summer placements at leading third level universities including NUI Galway and University of Limerick. Congratulating all the participants at the BT Young Scientist Business Bootcamp award ceremony, Shay Walsh, Managing Director of Business, BT Ireland said, “It’s our fifth year delivering the BT Bootcamp here at UCD and as a judge I was once again hugely impressed with the entrepreneurial skills the students have displayed this week.  I hope that our 29 participants will be returning home this evening with an entirely new set of... read more

Scaling the Heights of Success Through STEM

Two of the most popular faces in sport and broadcasting were flying high in Croke Park today to officially launch the 2015 BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition, which will take place in January in the RDS, Dublin. Irish rugby international Mike Ross, and RTÉ’s Keelin Shanley were joined by former BT Young Scientist winner Aisling Judge to call on students and teachers all over Ireland to get involved in Ireland’s premier science and technology exhibition. Both Mike Ross and Keelin Shanley are keen advocates of the STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) agenda, having based their education around the subjects. Mike holds a BSc in Plant and Microbial Biotechnology from UCC, and has a real passion for science, something he says that he has been able to apply in many ways in his profession as an international rugby player. Keelin Shanley has a BSc in Biochemistry from Trinity College and over the course of her successful career has won numerous journalistic awards including science journalist of the year. Speaking at this morning’s launch before his imminent departure to Argentina for the Ireland tour, Mike said, “I’ve always understood the value of furthering your education and science is something I have a real passion for. A science degree teaches you to critically evaluate any situation and to fully explore the potential opportunities and challenges presented by it, something I use in everyday life and while appraising all my options on the pitch. Science through sport has taught me more about the physical capabilities of our bodies as well as their limits and how to harness and maximise my own... read more


BT today marked the launch of the 2015 BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition by announcing an exciting new partnership with Queen’s University Belfast, that will see both organisations come together to foster greater engagement in STEM subjects across Northern Ireland. In addition to encouraging more schools to get involved in the BT Young Scientist & Technology exhibition, the partnership with Queen’s provides BT with a platform to bring its successful ‘BT Business Bootcamp’ to Northern Ireland for the first time. The BT Business Bootcamp was launched in 2010 in the Republic of Ireland as a way to help students bridge the gap between education and business. Each year, 30 students who participate in the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition, and who demonstrate entrepreneurial flair and business acumen, are invited to attend this four day innovation and skills camp. With the help of established business leaders, the bootcamp inspires creativity and innovative thinking, and gives students the practical skills and know-how to take their commercially viable ideas to the next level. The 2015 Northern Ireland BT Business Bootcamp will also include collaboration with the NI Science Connect programme, to offer additional support to those students who want to turn their idea into a business prospect. Peter Morris, Director of Corporate Services, BT Ireland commented, “At BT we are extremely proud of the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition and are delighted that Queen’s, a world renowned academic institution recognises the exhibition as an outstanding forum for driving interest and up-take in STEM subjects. “Through the Queen’s outreach network, we will be engaging directly with more students and by... read more

Women Invent Tomorrow – Top 100 Irish Women in STEM

Mari Cahalane, head of the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition (BTYSTE) , for the last eight years was voted into the top 100 listing of Ireland’s leading women in the areas of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). BT Ireland has organised and sponsored the event for the past 15 years. The listing is part of the “Women Invent Tomorrow” campaign, organised by online technology journal Silicon Republic, which champions great role models for the STEM subjects in and from Ireland. “Those on the list range from world-beating academics to inspiring science communicators, from technical business leaders to early entrepreneurs. Mari has been named among them for her contribution to science outreach and education.” Mari says her place in the top 100 listing recognises the significant contribution the BTYSTE – which celebrated its 50th anniversary this year – makes to the increasing interest in STEM subjects in Ireland. She said “ It is a real honour to be listed with the other inspiring Women in STEM. BT involvement in the project over the past 15 years has allowed the exhibition to grown and flourish as one of the best worldwide. It has made a real and lasting contribution to STEM education in Ireland, allowing thousands of young people to make a positive contribution to their lives through their involvement in this fantastic annual event” Mari is not the only person with a BTYSTE connection in the top 100. She’s joined on the list by three of the projects judges – Julie Byrne, executive director of the Bell Labs Research Lab in Ireland, Professor Orla Feely of University College... read more


As almost 55,000 students await their Leaving Cert results tomorrow, an Irish survey has revealed that 86% of secondary school students believe that science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) subjects offer the best career opportunity. In addition the survey, which was commissioned by BT as organiser of the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition, also revealed that over 72% of secondary school students plan to study a STEM subject at third level. Conducted through Facebook and Twitter, and completed by over one thousand respondents from 26 counties aged from 13 to 18 years, the survey also revealed that while 73% of students say that STEM subjects are promoted in their schools, 36% of respondents believe that boys receive more encouragement than girls to study these subjects. Entrepreneurship and a career in technology also topped the list for respondents with 59% of students saying they would choose Mark Zuckerberg’s job. 18% of respondents said they would choose Barack Obama’s job, while the life of pop star Miley Cyrus received only 13% of votes. It seems however, that these budding technology entrepreneurs have mixed views when it comes to their potential earnings. When asked how much money they expect to earn in their first year of full-time employment, the majority of respondents (39%) are expecting €15,000 – €30,000, 26% expect to earn €30,000 – €45,000 with an optimistic 13% expecting to earn over €45,000 in their first year at work. Conversely, 22% of respondents expect to earn less than €15,000 in their first year of full-time employment and of this 22%, 3% do not expect to be paid at all. Commenting... read more
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