Science Week kicks off in Sligo
Annual week of science runs until November 17th
Terence Finnegan , spins a glass of water on a tray , to demonstrate centrifugal forces for Roisin Clarke and Mark Coen , who are keeping a safe distance, at the annual Science and Technology Fair as part of Science Week Ireland, in the Institute of Technology, Sligo, yesterday yesterday. Photograph: James Connolly
Science Week started with a bang in Sligo yesterday, with scientist Sue McGrath leaving her eager audience stunned by her imaginative and exploding experiments.
The annual week of science, which runs until November 17th, is being celebrated at the Institute of Technology Sligo while construction work takes place on a €17.5 million science block extension. When finished in June 2014, it will house several lecture theatres, specialist laboratories and a 600-seater student restaurant.
The expansion is part of a five-year €35 million programme being carried out at the 70-acre campus on the edge of Sligo town.
Families descended on the institute to give their junior budding scientists a taste of what may become their future careers. The excitement was palpable as the mysteries of science were exposed and appreciated by young and old alike, with many parents expressing the wish that science lessons in their school days had been as adventurous and captivating as those witnessed yesterday.
A feast of lectures delivered in an informative and entertaining manner will continue throughout the week.
The head of the school of science, Dr Jeremy Bird, said the institute was focusing on encouraging young children, primary and secondary pupils to consider science as a career – to motivate them by fostering excitement in the subject.
“We have some highly professional scientists here today showing science in a fun way.
“Last year we took 340 first- year science students, this year that figure will rise. We currently have 1,100 students in the school of science,” Dr Bird said.
IT Sligo is optimistic of achieving a technical university status and is in negotiations with Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology and Letterkenny Institute of Technology. If successful, it would see all three institutions united rather than competing for students.
Science Week – What’s On
Today: Science is Awesome! An exhibition of science facts and images aimed at primary and secondary school children. Free, 9.30am-8pm, County Library, Town Centre, Tallaght, Dublin. For more information, please contact Des Mullally on 01-4620073.
Tomorrow: Are the Laws of Physics Changing? Talk by John D Barrow of Cambridge on the latest findings by astronomers that point to variability in the laws of physics, 6pm, G10 lecture theatre, Brookfield Health Sciences Complex, UCC. Free but pre-book, contact Gilly Clarke, 01-6762570