WEST Cork maintained its winning reputation at this year’s BT Young Scientist (BTYS) awards, with local schools taking home some of the coveted top awards.
Jennifer McCarthy, sixthyear student at Kinsale Community School, got two prizes for her project ‘Helping Hemp Heal -– the design of a nano-formulation to increase the absorption of cannabidiol in the gastro-intestinal tract.’
Jennifer, who has a patent pending on her work, with a decision due in February, got first prize in the chemical, physical and mathematical senior group and was also the winner of the Eli Lilly Special Award which includes a first year scholarship to UCC as part of the prize.
Two other projects from the Kinsale school were highly commended, while Ryan McCarthy won third place in the social and behavioural junior individual for a project called ‘The attitude of parents towards protective clothing and injury prevention in rugby.’
Matthew Sheehan and Asa Curran from Schull Community College were highly commended for their project ‘At your best with rest – an investigation into sleep deprivation in young athletes.’
Another project by Schull students on plastic debris on beaches was also highly commended, while a project on road quality in rural Ireland won third place in the social and behavioural intermediate group.
Bandon Grammar School (BGS) took second place in the social and behavioural category intermediate for a project by Ashleigh Wood, Lucy Quirke and Elspeth McIntosh called ‘Dyslexia: Learning difficulty or hidden talent?.’
The group also picked up the National Council for Special Education Award for their project. BGS also won a display award.
St Brogan’s College Bandon’s second year students Adam Straub and Timmy Galvin were recognised for their project ‘QEAD Quad Emergency Alert Device,’ which won the ABP Food Group and farm safety award and took third place in the technology junior group.
The prestigious educator award went to Patrick O’Keeffe, biology and agricultural science teacher in Clonakilty Community College for his commitment and encouragement in consistently enabling his students to participate successfully in all categories of the Young Scientists exhibition. Patrick received the Analog Devices Trophy and a trip to USA.
Also among the category winners were Carrigaline Community School and Colaiste Muire Crosshaven with Clonakilty’s Sacred Heart Secondary School earning a highly commended for one of their projects.
Overall BTYS winner was Adam Kelly, from Skerries Community College, for his project entitled ‘Optimising The Simulation Of General Quantum Circuits’.