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To the BT Young Scientist Exhibition and beyond!

15 January, 2010 - by Caitríona Ruane

Ninety-three talented young scientists and innovators from the north of Ireland will compete for the top prizes at this year’s BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition in the RDS, Dublin.

The Education Minister, Caitríona Ruane, visited the 46th Exhibition today to view the wide range of projects from across the island of Ireland and give out a new Special Award for entrants from the north of Ireland.

Speaking at the event, the Minister said: “A total of 1,586 projects were submitted across Ireland and 520 have qualified to compete in the finals. We have seen a 66% rise in entries from schools across the north with 42 projects from 23 schools making it through to this year’s finals. That is a strong indication of how popular this exhibition is with pupils and teachers and demonstrates the interest in science and technology.

“Albert Einstein said, ‘The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.’ It is clear the pupils here have a natural curiosity which has lead to some very exciting projects and conclusions.

“The imaginative projects include a study on the effect of music on our memory, the physics of walking on hot coals, developing a sensory aid for Autistic learners, investigating the effectiveness of energy drinks and examining the best growing conditions for strawberries.

“The 42 projects from the north are in the running for some of the top prizes and I am particularly pleased to see the inclusion of a Special Award for pupils from the north, which acknowledges their effort and increased participation.”

The Department of Education contributed £25,000 to the 2010 BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition. The BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition 2010 has seen a total of 1,586 entries for the 2010 competition, including 83 projects from the north of Ireland. Of the 520 entries that have qualified to compete in the finals at the RDS, 42 are from the north.

The Minister continued: “The importance of science, technology and engineering cannot be underestimated. It helps young people develop their analytical, exploratory and investigative skills, which lead to innovators in a wide range of careers.

“I would like to congratulate all the students, teachers and technicians, for the time and effort they have spent in putting together their entries.”

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