More than four hundred participants from five different schools showcased their love for science in the form of well executed projects at SciFest
SciFest, a local one day science fair held in third level colleges across the country took place at the WIT Arena with the aim to encourage a love of science in secondary school students. More than 400 students took part in the event, with schools attending from counties Waterford, Wicklow, Wexford, Tipperary and Kilkenny.
SciFest at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) is coordinated by Calmast, WIT’s STEM Outreach Centre. Students showcased their projects at the WIT Arena which were subsequently judged and ranked by local STEM companies and WIT lecturers from the Schools of Engineering, Science and Health Sciences.The event was opened by Minister John Halligan and President of WIT Prof Willie Donnelly.
The overall winner of the competition was a project entitled : Prevention of further concussions & head trauma in rugby due to early detection by Holly Meaney and Eimear Power, Mercy Secondary School , Waterford. The project involved designing a piece of equipment that can detect force , acceleration & head angle during a rugby tackle. The equipment can be put into a scrum cap, from which the data can be transmitted to and viewed through an app by team management on the sidelines allowing them to determine if head trauma has taken place and if the player is likely to have suffered concussion. Holly and Eimear will now compete in the Scifest National Final in November, the winner of which will represent Ireland at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, USA.
SciFest at WIT coordinator Sheila Donegan said, “We are delighted to have a record number of students entering Scifest here in WIT. Ten years ago at our first Scifest, we were delighted to welcome 15 projects, now 10 years later we have 171 projects from schools in Waterford, Wexford, Tipperary, Kilkenny and Wicklow.”
Calmast and WIT lecturer Cordula Weiss said, “As always, the projects entered by the students in SciFest are impressive, engaging and thought-provoking. Secondary school students from across the region are demonstrating their passion for science, technology, engineering and maths, which is clearly evident from the high standard of research that has gone into the entries this year.”
SciFest is an all-inclusive, all-island science initiative which fosters active, collaborative and inquiry-based learning among second-level students. SciFest is funded primarily by Science Foundation Ireland, Boston Scientific, Intel and Abbott.
Local prizes were sponsored by TEVA, Eirgen, GSK, Bausch and Lomb, MSD, WIT