Thomas and Dylan visit Berlin

A brief report on the amazing time Dylan Moloney and Thomas Curtin had as part of their Berlin long Night of Science Award at the SciFest 2017 National Final
Thomas and Dylan visit Berlin

We would like to express our gratitude to Sheila & George Porter and especially to Marie Walsh and all those that help organise and run the Limerick regional round of SciFest. Our school has been involved in SciFest for a few years and each year it gets better and bigger. Our students look forward to the annual invitation to participate and the quality of judging and courtesy exhibited to them is second to none. Irrespective of their project, their background, they are treated to an amazing experience, one which features in our school calendar each year and exposes them to a "third level experience" as well as the possibility to present their work to scientists and scholars.

They come back to Desmond College with a passion to continue with their projects or in some case the realisation that they need to conduct different research. Either outcome is valid and helps ensure that each student can work to achieve his or her potential.

Thomas and Dylan exhibited their project "Height Adjustable Crutch" in LIT Moylish in May 2017 where they were awarded the Abbott Runner-up Best Project Award and the Boston Scientific Medical Devices Award. Winning these awards meant that Thomas and Dylan qualified to participate in the SciFest 2017 National Final which was held in Dublin in November. There the judges were so impressed with their invention that they were awarded the overall SciFest 2017 Runner-up Best Project Award. The prize consisted of a trophy and the opportunity to represent SciFest at the Berlin Long Night of Science 2018. Thomas and Dylan also received a Boston Scientific Excellence in STEM Award in recognition of their success at regional level. That summer Thomas and Dylan wrote in the Desmond College Yearbook:

"We got the opportunity to be on site at Boston Scientific Cork, where we learned how they produce products to high standards, while also learning how important it is to communicate to fellow workers. Overall, we are delighted with our success throughout SciFest and the professionalism of the judges and other competitors. It was an amazing experience and we have really developed our skills along the way."

The Berlin Long Night of Science Award is supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Thomas, Dylan and their teacher Donal Enright travelled to Berlin on Thursday 7 June and returned home on Sunday 10 June. Speaking of the experience Donal said:

"We got the opportunity to be on site at Boston Scientific Cork, where we learned how they produce products to high standards, while also learning how important it is to communicate to fellow workers. Overall, we are delighted with our success throughout SciFest and the professionalism of the judges and other competitors. It was an amazing experience and we have really developed our skills along the way."

Thomas and Dylan toured Berlin by boat, getting very proficient at using the U Bahn and the S Bahn. Thomas got to practice his German and they experienced first-hand scientific developments at the actual Long Night of Science with started at 5pm and went on until midnight, held across various locations in Berlin.

We would like to thank Cornelia and Aoife and all the members of the Irish Embassy in Berlin who looked after us so well. All in all, the whole experience is one that we are delighted to have been associated with, the experiences Thomas and Dylan have had are ones that will influence their choice of careers in the future.’

Donal Enright, Teacher

Dylan Moloney and Thomas Curtin are pupils at Desmond College, Newcastle West, Co. Limerick

Visit YouTube for details of their project: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yy4Qx688Uqc

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