Ireland’s most inclusive science event continues online so students can still take part despite Covid-19 restrictions
Cork students registered for SciFest 2020 are being asked to upload their projects online for judging for this year’s 15th annual SciFest@College competition. In line with recommendations and advice from the HSE, the SciFest regional finals that usually take place in 16 venues will continue online in the wake of the Covid-19 closure of schools, ITs and universities.
Second-level school students preparing for the SciFest regional finals in Cork IT are being asked to complete an online form and submit their project books as well as supplementary material to www.scifest.ie for online judging by Thursday, May 14, 2020.
Those participating in group projects are encouraged to collaborate with each other online and over the phone and then to upload their project and supporting material for judging through the new online portal. Teachers are asked to encourage their students to continue to work on their projects and guide them through any questions they may have.
Sheila Porter, SciFest Founder and CEO said: “Coronavirus means that all schools, ITs and universities will be closed for the coming weeks, which is a great disappointment for all of us involved with SciFest. We want to encourage students to continue to work on their projects in the coming weeks in preparation for the regional finals and submit their projects online for judging. With over 3,000 students having signed up for SciFest@College prior to the COVID-19 restrictions, we want to facilitate this learning opportunity in as much as is possible and we know from speaking to students, teachers and parents that they are eager to participate, and ensure students can take part in the SciFest National Final in November.”
“We appreciate that this is not an ideal situation and that these measures won’t be available to all students, but this will allow us to continue this year’s competition, supporting as many students as possible, despite the unprecedented situation we find ourselves in. We would like to thank our partners across higher education, our judges and our sponsors for their assistance in helping SciFest@College go online.”
In SciFest, second-level students showcase STEM projects at a series of one-day science fairs held locally in schools and regionally at 16 venues in the Institutes of Technology, TU Dublin, DCU and St. Mary’s College, Derry. The winners from each regional STEM fair will go on to compete at a national final in November 2020. The winner(s) of the SciFest National Final 2020 will be presented with a trophy and will represent Ireland at the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) 2021 in the USA.
SciFest is funded primarily by Science Foundation Ireland, Boston Scientific, Intel Ireland and Specsavers.
For more information on SciFest@College, the online process and regular updates please visit www.scifest.ie.