SciFest 2014 announced for budding scientists

6 Feb 2014

Ireland's Minster for Research and Innovation Seán Sherlock, TD, ignites SciFest 2014 with a student's helping hand

Ireland’s Minster for Research and Innovation Seán Sherlock, TD, has called upon students throughout the country to put their knowledge of science to the test and enter SciFest 2014.

Now in its seventh year as a national project, SciFest features second-level students from across the island of Ireland showcasing science, technology, engineering and maths projects at a series of one-day science fairs held regionally in the 14 Institutes of Technology and the University of Ulster, Derry. 

The winners from each regional science fair go on to compete at a national final in November.

The national final winner(s) of SciFest 2014 will be presented with a trophy and will represent Ireland at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) 2015 in Pittsburgh.

Celebrated alumni

The year 2013 saw a record number of students and schools taking part, with 5,368 students exhibiting 2,262 projects in schools and Institutes of Technology across the country.

The SciFest 2013 national final winner was 2014 BT Young Scientist winner Paul Clarke from Raheny, Dublin, who solved a mathematical problem that has been baffling mathematicians since the 1930s.

His discovery has taken us a step closer to solving the Travelling Salesman Problem, which has applications in business models, including computer routing and networking.

Speaking at the launch of the 2014 competition in Tullamore College, Co Offaly, Sheila Porter, SciFest CEO said: “Since SciFest was launched nationwide six years ago it has gone from strength to strength. I am continually amazed by the passion and dedication demonstrated by the students.

“SciFest is a celebration of STEM subjects. It encourages students to push the boundaries of the classroom, use their knowledge of science, investigate and be creative in their projects. The achievement of these students is an inspiration to us all and is a tribute to them and to the hard work and support of their teachers.”

Students wishing to take part in this year’s event may visit the SciFest website to obtain an entry form.

Completed entry forms must be submitted by Friday, 7 March.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic