BT Young Scientist exhibition breaks record, as 50pc of schools submit entries

21 Oct 2013

A record number of students from around the Republic of Ireland – 4,418 to be exact – have submitted entries to the upcoming BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition (BTYSTE) that will take place in January 2014. Apparently, the next contest will be the biggest yet, as 50pc of secondary schools across 32 counties have entered the 50th anniversary of the annual Irish science event.

The students who have entered this time around have submitted 2,000 ideas, BT Ireland confirmed.

For the past 14 years, BT has organised the exhibition. Each year, its goal has been to evolve the exhibition to showcase the ideas that Ireland’s future generation have to disrupt such areas as science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), as well as innovation and commercialisation.  

In that time frame, BT – along with students, families and teachers – has managed to triple the number of project entries. A commercialisation bootcamp has been added to the mix, plus schools can dip into a financial bursary to help with their travel to and from the competition.

The star attraction: STEM

  • In all, 379 schools are being represented by the 4,418 students who have entered the contest
  • The Biological and Ecological Sciences category received 574 entries
  • 350 entries have been received for the Chemical, Physical and Mathematical Sciences category
  • The Social and Behavioural Sciences category obtained 701 entries
  • The Technology category drew 375 entries

Education Minister Ruairí Quinn, TD, said the contest is “breaking new records”, with figures up for participating students and schools, as well as an increase in entries in categories such as Chemical, Physical and Mathematical Sciences.

“The importance of investment in research and innovation to our economy cannot be underestimated,” he said.

The 50th BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition will take place in the RDS, Dublin, from 8-11 January 2014.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic