Clare students do well awards at Intel Mini Scientist Grand Final

Clare students do well awards at Intel Mini Scientist Grand Final

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Freya Starr Amran, Clara Powell and Addison O’Loughlin from Clarecastle National School picked up the award for Most Innovative Idea – Photo: Conor McCabe

Students from across Ireland took part in the Intel Mini Scientist Grand Final, an event which is the culmination of a nationwide competition which has been running since September 2018.

St. John National School and Clarecastle National school students picked up special awards for their projects

The Intel Mini Scientist, which is now in its 12th year, gives primary school students from 4th, 5th and 6th class, the chance to explore science through project based learning and exhibitions.

The first phase of the program involves students participating at local level exhibitions where Intel judges visit the participating schools, choosing two winning projects in each. The second phase saw each of these winning projects take part in the Mini Scientist Regional Finals which were hosted throughout December in Leixlip and Shannon.

The 2018 / 2019 initiative was another exciting year for the Mini Scientist competition with almost 8,000 students from 120 schools in 18 counties across Ireland taking part in the Grand Final event. This year there were almost 2,500 projects exhibited as part of the Mini Scientist competition and the Grand Final brought together the top 23 projects from across the country.

At the Grand Final, which was held in the Aula Maxima at Maynooth University, the participants exhibited their projects for a panel of judges, which was made up from Intel employees who each had the difficult task of choosing the winning projects from the very creative variety. Each of the projects included visual displays, projects books and practical experiments based on a scientific area aligned with the national primary science curriculum.

Meabh Keenan, Meabh McGonagle, Jennifer Mullen and Kate Strogen from St John National School won the Best Project Book award – Photo: Conor McCabe

The Grand Final was filled with innovative and imaginative projects, put together through months of hard work and the judges, after a very difficult task of deliberation, selected their winning projects.

Best Project book

Cows – The Good, The Bad and The Ugly – St. John National School, Co. Clare

Most Innovative Idea

How Solar Panels Work – Clarecastle National School, Co. Clare

The event was held for the first time this year in Maynooth University. Also taking place at the University on March 4th was the signing of a new agreement between Intel and Maynooth University which will see the two organisations establish a strategic partnership for research and innovation, and to nurture future talent. The agreement was signed by Maynooth University President, Professor Philip Nolan and Eamonn Sinnott, General Manager of Intel Ireland and Vice President Technology Manufacturing Group, marking a new chapter in the relationship between Ireland’s fastest growing university and the global leader in manufacturing and technology.

Following the signing of this new agreement, Prof. Philip Nolan and Eamonn Sinnott officially opened the Mini Scientist Grand Final. Prof. Philip Nolan, addressed the students and wished them well for the competition, remarking that “So many journeys in science start with young people deciding to complete a science project just as you have done and I would like to congratulate you on starting that journey at such an early age and for being so committed to your ideas and to embracing scientific learning. There are many opportunities ahead for each of you at places just like Maynooth University and Intel, and I wish you all the very best today and into the future”.

Intel Ireland General Manager Eamonn Sinnott was also on hand to congratulate the participating students on reaching the final and to wish them well, “Now more than ever Ireland needs really creative, curious, and committed young people and that’s why we love to support competitions just like this because they that allow us to meet incredible students who are at the start of their science and technology journey. The technology of today is being made right now in places like the Intel campus in Leixlip but the technology of tomorrow will come from people like you, from competitions just like this”.

For more information about the grand final event or to sign your school up for the Mini Scientist competition visit www.intel.ie/miniscientist.

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Chief Reporter Pat Flynn has worked as a journalist for almost 30 years. His career began during the late 1980s when, like many aspiring radio presenters of the time, he worked for local pirate radio stations in Clare and Limerick. Pat joined Clare FM in 1990 where he worked as researcher initially and later presented several different programmes including the station's flagship current affairs programme. He was also the station's News Editor and Deputy Controller of Programmes. Despite leaving in 2003 to pursue a career as a freelance journalist, he continues to work with the station to this day. As well as being the Clare Herald’s Chief Reporter Pat is also freelance journalist and broadcaster, contributing to Ireland’s national newspapers and is a regular contributor to national broadcasters.

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