Tag Archive | "Ciara Judge"

Cork students make Time’s most influential teenager list


Three Irish students from Cork have made it onto Time magazine’s annual list of most influential teenagers, alongside Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai and New Zealand singer Lorde.

Ciara Judge, 16, Emer Hickey, 17, and Sophie Healy-Thow, 17, were noted for their discovery of bacteria that deposits nitrogen from the atmosphere into soil.

The Kinsale Community College students scooped the grand prize at the Google Science Fair in California last month.

Two years ago, the three then-third year students, took the top prize at the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition.

They discovered that a naturally occurring bacteria in soil could be used to speed up the germination process of certain crops by up to 50%.

They then went on to scoop the top award in their category at the EU Young Scientist of the year competition, before their project was deemed the overall winner of the Google prize.

Other teenagers on Time’s list include the daughters of US President Barack Obama, Malia 16 and Sasha 13.

Time said it compiled its list of 25 teens – 29, counting accolades shared by siblings and partners – by analysing their social media following, business successes and cultural importance.

The youngest were Sasha Obama and fellow 13-year-old baseball pitcher Mo’ne Davis, who led her Philadelphia boys’ team to the Little League World Series and landed a spot on the cover of Sports Illustrated.

Tavi Gevinson, the 18-year-old fashion writer and founder of popular online magazine Rookie, was noted as emblematic of the contemporary teen in the Internet age, while transgender activist Jazz Jennings, 14, and Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Joshua Wong, 18, also made the list.

The dominant categories were athletes, actors and singers.

Actors taking centre stage were Kiernan Shipka, 14, of “Mad Men,”  Rico Rodriguez, 16, of “Modern Family” and “The Equalizer’s” Chloe Grace Moretz, 17.

Pop singers Becky G, 17, and Austin Mahone, 18, earned plaudits as did New Zealand pro golfer Lydia Ko, 17, and Afghan National Cycling Team member Salma Kakar, 17.

Teens noted for business success include 15-year-old Erik Finman, founder of the online tutoring site Botangle.com; YouTube fashion star Bethany Mota, 18, and actress-turned-stock picker Rachel Fox, 18.

Los Angeles teen chef Flynn McGarry, 15, joined stars of Twitter’s Vine short-form video service, Nash Grier, and singer Shawn Mendes, both 16.

Jaden Smith, 16, son of actors Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, was recognised for acting and his Twitter following, while reality TV stars the Jenner sisters Kendall, 18, and Kylie, 17, were noted for their burgeoning Hollywood and merchandising careers.

Also in the spotlight were 19-year-olds Megan Grassell, founder of the Yellowberry clothing company that makes bras for teens, and South African-Australian YouTube star and actor-musician Troye Sivan.

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Three Irish schoolgirls win Google Science Fair


Ciara Judge, Emer Hickey and Sophie Healy-Thow from Kinsale Community School were last night named the overall winners of the Grand Prize as well as the 15-16 Age category at the Google Science Fair in California.

The Science Fair competition is Google’s way of encouraging the next generation of scientists and engineers. The overall grand prize includes a 10-day National Geographic Expedition to the Galapagos Islands, a visit to the Virgin Galactic Spaceport in New Mexico, and US$50,000 in scholarship funding.

The three students from Kinsale Community School in Cork – who won the BT Young Scientist & Technology Award in 2013 – won the Grand Prize as well as the  15-16 Age Group category for their project entitled “Combating the Global Food Crisis: Diazotoph bacteria as a cereal crop growth promoter.”

The girls’ project investigated the use of diazotroph bacteria as a cereal crop germination and growth aid.

They carried out an extensive study on crops of wheat, oats and barley and statistical analysis of their results indicated that naturally occurring Rhizobium strains of the diazotroph bacteria family accelerated germination by up to 50pc and, in the case of barley, increased yields by 74pc. Not only could this discovery address food poverty, it could also reduce agriculture’s environmental footprint by reducing the use of fertiliser.

Ciara Judge spoke movingly at the recent Digital Ireland Forum about how children are crying out for digital skills to be taught in Irish schools.

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BT Young Scientist winners selected as Google Science Fair Global finalists


The 2014 Google Science Fair Global finalists have been announced and, among the 15 projects selected from teenagers around the world, Ireland’s BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition winners are among them.

The Google Science Fair finalists range in age from 13 to 18, and 2013 BTYSTE winners Ciara Judge, Émer Hickey and Sophie Healy-Thow will compete in the 15 to 16 age category with their project entitled Combating the Global Food Crisis: Diazotoph bacteria as a cereal crop growth promoter.

The girls’ project investigated the use of diazotroph bacteria as a cereal crop germination and growth aid. They carried out an extensive study on crops of wheat, oats and barley and statistical analysis of their results indicated that naturally occurring Rhizobium strains of the diazotroph bacteria family accelerated germination by up to 50pc and, in the case of barley, increased yields by 74pc. Not only could this discovery address food poverty, it could also reduce agriculture’s environmental footprint by reducing the use of fertiliser.

Life-changing prizes on offer

The Science Fair competition is Google’s way of encouraging the next generation of scientists and engineers.

Next month, the selected finalists will travel to California to compete at Google headquarters for the three age category awards and the overall grand prize, which includes a 10-day National Geographic Expedition to the Galapagos Islands, a visit to the Virgin Galactic Spaceport in New Mexico, and US$50,000 in scholarship funding.

Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on 23 September, which will be live-streamed on the Science Fair YouTube channel and on the competition website.

From 1 September, visitors to the website will also be allowed to select their favourite project for the Voter’s Choice Award.

Rising stars

The Kinsale Community School students have been on a winning streak since they took home the top prize in the 2013 BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition.

They went on to win first prize in biology at the European Union Contest for Young Scientists in Prague last September, and each of them was presented with a Rising Star award at Silicon Republic’s Women Invent Tomorrow event this summer after being named as ‘Ones to Watch’ on our list of 100 Top Women in STEM.

The three young scientists have also wowed crowds at a number of speaking engagements over the past year, including Accenture’s International Women’s Day celebration and the Excited digital learning festival.

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