Northern Ireland’s largest science fair will take place at Ulster University, Jordanstown for the first time on Tuesday 23rd June as it plays host to the Sentinus Young Innovators Exhibition, incorporating the regional Big Bang UK science and engineering fair.
Alongside the exhibition and competition, there will be a number of interactive science shows designed to bring science to life. This year will see the BBC One Show’s resident TV scientist, Dr Marty Jopson deliver his “Record Breaking Science” show where he will delve into the science behind his recent TV world record successes and attempt another world record using science as the basis.
The annual science showcase celebrates the achievements of young people in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM), and centres on an exhibition of innovative and exciting science projects carried out by students from primary and secondary schools across the island of Ireland. This year will see over 150 projects compete to win over 80 prizes including an opportunity to represent Northern Ireland in a number of international science and engineering competitions in the USA and UK. As usual the projects cover a wide range of subjects and real world challenges and this year they include:
- Development of an Eczema sleep suit to aid Eczema sufferers
- An investigation into the use of rainwater as a renewable energy source
- Development of a farm safety app to promote safety on the farm
- A cellular analysis on the effects of garlic extract on cancer cell growth
- An investigation into how social media can effect mood and either make you happy or sad
- Development of a self-build electric car
- A mathematical analysis of winning number patterns in the National Lottery draws
The event is organised by Sentinus, an educational charity working with over 60,000 young people a year in Northern Ireland to deliver fun and rewarding programmes that promote engagement in STEM subjects. Speaking about the flagship event, Bill Connor, Chief Executive said;
“We all know that a STEM literate society is considered vital to the long-term economic success of Northern Ireland and that these skills are considered a necessity to enable us compete in a truly global and connected marketplace. This flagship event is a culmination of a lot of our work with schools over the past year which is designed to encourage and develop an interest in STEM subjects and skills among our young people. As always we can expect to see some fabulous science projects and inventions which address real world problems and this year we have added a wide range of engaging science shows to capture the imagination of attendees. The event is free and open to the public, and we would invite anyone who is interested to come along and see what the future of STEM in Northern Ireland has to offer. We can guarantee you will be amazed by the talent on show and will leave more knowledgeable about the world of science.”
On the day, exhibitions of project work from primary, post-primary and further and higher education students will be displayed and judged by industry experts who volunteer their time as part of a commitment to progress the STEM agenda for Northern Ireland. Some of these judges will come from the Ulster University, long-time supporters of Young Innovators and hosts of this year’s event. Professor Jonathan Wallace Director of Academic Enterprise and Employability for the Faculty of Computing and Engineering said:
“Ulster University is delighted to host the Sentinus Young Innovators Exhibition for the first time and is pleased that we are also able to support the event by judging some of the projects on display. We know very well the importance of STEM subjects in the development of a knowledge based economy in Northern Ireland. We also know how vital it is to instil the interest and passion for the subjects in our young people very early on. We applaud the work of Sentinus and their partners in this regard and look forward to helping them deliver a successful platform to showcase the fantastic emerging STEM talent we have in Northern Ireland. Our hope is that we can inspire more young people to follow their lead.”
As well as the exhibition of science projects, school children and members of the public attending the event will also have the opportunity to attend over 20 interactive workshops and exhibits hosted by local companies and popular shows such as, Scientific Sue’s Potions and Explosions and Neil Monteiro’s Science of Magic.
Employers, universities and industry bodies will be in attendance to provide valuable advice about pursuing a career in the STEM sectors.
The Sentinus Young Innovators Exhibition will be held between 10am and 3pm on Tuesday 23rd June at the Ulster University, Jordanstown campus. Further details about the event can be found at www.sentinus.co.uk