Key facts

56 years of making history

2020 will see the exhibition celebrate its 56th year, making it one of the longest standing exhibitions of its kind in the world. Did you know? 3,773 students from 374 schools across the island of Ireland competed for the coveted title ‘BT Young Scientist & Technologist of the Year 2019′

BT will celebrate 20 years of involvement in January 2020

We are proud to not just sponsor the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition, but also to be entrusted with the organising and running of it too. Ours is a company founded on an inventive and pioneering spirit, we are passionate about technology and feel a real affinity with all the entrants.

50th anniversary

January 2014 saw the celebration of 50 years of the Young Scientist exhibition, the longest standing display of secondary school students’ abilities in the area of science and technology. The first ever Young Scientist Exhibition was held in the Mansion House in 1965: 230 students participated and 5,000 people attended. Since 1965, over three quarters of a million people have visited the Young Scientist Exhibition.

…and the winning continues

To date, Irish students have taken the top honours fourteen times at the European Union Science Contest. Irish Young Scientists are amongst the youngest entrants and have scooped over 20 top awards to date in the Science and Engineering Fair in the USA.

Famous milestones, through the years

The first ever winner of the Young Scientist Exhibition was John Monahan from Newbridge College, Co. Kildare (1965). John has retired as president of his own biotech company, Avigen Inc, based in California.  
The first female winner was Mary Finn from the Ursuline Convent, Sligo (1966).
Richard Elliot, from Portora Royal School, Enniskillen, was the first student from Northern Ireland to win Young Scientist of the Year (1974).
Turan Mirza, William Murphy and Gareth Clarke from Carrickfergus Grammar School in Antrim were the first group team to win the Young Scientists of the Year title (1983).
The 2015 winners, Ian O’Sullivan and Eimear Murphy, are only the 2nd mixed team to take the Young Scientists of the Year title, the last being Emma Donnellan and Henry Byrne from FCJ Secondary School in Bunclody, Co Wexford (1987).
Peter Taylor, Shane Browne and Michael O’Toole won the 2001 exhibition and went on to win third place at the 13th EU Young Scientist Contest, Norway in September.
Aisling Judge, Kinsale, Co Cork won in January 2006 and was the first Cork winner or female winner since Sarah Flannery’s global success seven years earlier. At only 14 years old, Aisling was the youngest ever winner in the exhibition’s history. Aisling went on to claim third prize at the European Union Young Scientist Contest in September 2006.
Abdusalam Abubakar won the title in January 2007. Abdul also went on to win the European Young Scientist in Valencia in Spain in September 2007 with this project, entitled ‘An Extension of Weiner’s Attack on RSA Encryption’
The 2008 winner Emer Jones from Tralee is the youngest ever BT Young Scientist, she won with a project entitled, “Research and Development of Emergency Sandbag Shelters”. Emer went on to take second place at the European Union Contest for Young Scientists in Copenhagen in September 2008.
John D. O’Callaghan (aged 14) and Liam McCarthy (aged 13), 2nd year students from Kinsale Community School, Co Cork won in January 2009 with their project entitled, “The Development of a Convenient Test Method for Somatic Cell Count and its Importance in Milk Production”. John and Liam will go on to represent Ireland at the European Union Contest for Young Scientists in Paris this September.
In the 26 year history of the European Union Contest for Young Scientists, Ireland has won first place 14 times. Our most recent winners were in 2013, with Emer Hickey, Sophie Healy-Thow and Ciara Judge taking the title.
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