A team of five school students who work-shopped the project Smart Pipe: An automated water circulation anti-freezing system were chosen as the best overall group at the 2012 BT Young Scientist Business Bootcamp, held at University College Dublin. They were evaluated by a panel of expert judges and course mentors and selected as the team that developed most during the programme. The members of the team are Matt Murtagh White (17) from Kilkenny College, Kilkenny; Emer Creedon (16) from Regina Mundi College, Cork; Adam Torrens (19) from South Eastern Regional College, Bangor; Deirdre Harford (17) from Loreto Secondary School, Balbriggan, Dublin; and Megan Doyle (16) from Skerries Community College, Dublin. Daniel Hobbs (17) from Maynooth Post Primary, Co Kildare was recognised as the best individual student during the week.
The winners are awarded a summer placement at one of the leading third level universities in Ireland. The BT Young Scientist Business Bootcamp is a week long business mentoring and skills programme devised and delivered by BT and NovaUCD. Following the intensive week of training and workshops, some students have stated they will change their academic direction, and in turn their future career, based on what they learnt during the week at UCD. 90% of those attending this week also stated they anticipate an Irish economic recovery to take 7 – 10 years while most students would like to pursue medical, science or business degrees at third level.
Selected from January’s BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition, 32 students who demonstrated an understanding of commercially viable opportunities, business acumen and innovative flair took part in the programme. Each student receives a certificate of achievement upon completing the programme. Summer placements at NUI Galway, University of Limerick, UCD, and University of Ulster will be available for the winners. In addition James Eggers, St. Michael’s College, Dublin has been offered both commercial space and the opportunity to pitch his idea at the next Dublin Web Summit in October 2012. James’ project is ‘the detection of incidents on roads in real-time with Twitter and traffic cameras’.
Over the course of the four days the students participated in a number of business focused workshops from business planning and intellectual property management to design thinking and communications. Using these skills the group developed concepts ranging from ‘to develop a mathematical learning and communication tool for Autistic children in mainstream primary school’ ‘’ to ‘producing Irish grown dessert apples in favour of importing a substitute’.
Congratulating the winners and participants on the BT Young Scientist Business Bootcamp Shay Walsh, Managing Director Business, BT Ireland said “All of the students have brought great enthusiasm and creativity to their activities and presentations this week. This programme bridges the gap between classroom and boardroom, and in doing so recognises the innovators of tomorrow.” He added “The programme is a great example of how a platform like this can imbed an ethos of entrepreneurship and innovation in talented second-level students who are inspired by science and engineering.”