BT Young Scientist 2015 by the numbers: 54pc of entries are female, 46pc are male

22 Oct 2014

Minister for Education and Skills Jan O'Sullivan; Colm O'Neill, CEO, BT Ireland; and 2015 BT Young Scientist hopefuls from Chanel College, Coolock; Fingal Community College, Swords; Synge Street CBS, Dublin; and St Raphaela's Secondary School, Stillorgan

New records have been smashed in terms of the numbers of entries to the 51st BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition, with 2,077 project entries submitted in October by 4,616 students across Ireland.

This morning, schools across Ireland will be opening letters to confirm that their entries have been accepted into the competition that takes place in Dublin every January.

BT young scientists are constantly breaking records. As BT CEO Colm O’Neill recently pointed out, Irish winners from the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition have taken first place in 14 out of 25 years of the overall European science competition.

The 2013 winners of the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition Ciara Judge, Émer Hickey and Sophie Healy-Thow from Kinsale, Co Cork, have this year gone on to win the Grand Prize at the Google Science Fair and last week were included in Time magazine’s list of The 25 Most Influential Teens of 2014.

The 2014 winner of the BT Young Scientist competition, Paul Clarke from Dublin, achieved second place in mathematics at the European Union Contest for Young Scientists in Warsaw in September.

“We reached the 50th milestone, and saw both our 2013 and 2014 winners continue our run of international success with prizes in European and international competitions,” O’Neill said.

“We’ve now hit a new record with the 51st exhibition, receiving more entries than ever before and giving an unprecedented number of students an opportunity to be recognised and rewarded for their talent.”

Technology tops Irish students’ career choices

Research conducted recently by the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition demonstrated that technology tops the career aspirations of students in Ireland, with 59pc of those surveyed saying they would most prefer Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s job.

A life of entrepreneurship was selected ahead of holding the presidency of the United States with Barack Obama at 19pc, and the life of a pop star with Miley Cyrus receiving only 13pc of votes.

“Even in its 51st year, the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition is breaking new records, with project numbers up from students across the country,” said Minister for Education and Skills Jan O’Sullivan, TD.

“As Ireland continues to establish itself as a world leader in technology and science, the importance of an event like this cannot be underestimated. I would like to take this opportunity to commend everyone involved in this unique and remarkable event in the Irish education calendar.”

BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition 2015 by the numbers:

  • 2,077 entries received (up 4pc)
  • 4,616 students (up 4pc)
  • 367 schools represented
  • Entries received from 30 counties (no entries from Fermanagh and Armagh)
  • Students entered are 54pc female, 46pc male

Number of entries per category at BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition 2015:

  • Chemical, Physical and Mathematical Sciences: 382
  • Biological and Ecological Sciences: 615
  • Technology: 362
  • Social and Behavioural Sciences: 718

Don’t miss our Innovation Ireland Forum on 24 October in the Guinness Storehouse, Dublin

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years