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  • Northside East

Stunning success for Skerries Community College student

Tuesday, 15th January, 2019 10:53am
Stunning success for Skerries Community College student

Shay Walsh, managing director of BT Ireland (left) and Minister for Education and Skills, Joe McHugh (right), present the BT Young Scientist & Technology Award 2019 to Adam Kelly, from Skerries Community College. PHOTO: CHRIS BELLEW/FENNELL PHOTOGRAPHY

Stunning success for Skerries Community College student

Shay Walsh, managing director of BT Ireland (left) and Minister for Education and Skills, Joe McHugh (right), present the BT Young Scientist & Technology Award 2019 to Adam Kelly, from Skerries Community College. PHOTO: CHRIS BELLEW/FENNELL PHOTOGRAPHY

A North Dublin teen was celebrating at the weekend after being crowned overall winner of the 55th BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition (BTYSTE) competition.

Adam Kelly (17), a fifth year student at Skerries Community College, became the third Northside winner of the prestigious competition in six years.

Maria Louise Fufezan and Diana Bura, students at Loreto Secondary School, Balbriggan, won the overall title in 2016 while Paul Clarke, a student at St Paul’s College, Raheny, won the award in 2014.

Adam took home the top prize for his project entitled ‘Optimizing The Simulation Of General Quantum Circuits’.

Minister for Education and Skills, Joe McHugh, and Managing Director of BT Ireland, Shay Walsh, presented Adam with his prize in the BT Arena at the RDS.

Adam’s award includes the prize of €7,500 and the BTYSTE perpetual trophy. In addition, he will represent Ireland at the European Union Contest for Young Scientists, taking place in Bulgaria in September.

Adam presented his project in the Chemical, Physical & Mathematical Sciences section in the Senior category.
Shay Walsh congratulated every student who entered, and Adam on being crowned overall winner.

“His work shows terrific initiative, dedication and brilliance in tackling an immensely complex area of modern computing,” said Mr Walsh.
“For 55 years the exhibition has shown the ingenuity of Ireland’s youth, and this year’s exhibition is no exception.

“The students at BTYSTE have sought creative and innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing issues, and that spirit and drive is to be commended.”

Speaking about the winning entry, BT Young Scientist Judge and Chair of the Chemical, Physical and Mathematics Category, Professor Sean Corish, said: “Quantum computing is an emerging technology which represents a potentially significant advance in computing.

“Adam developed a tool to select the optimum algorithm for the simulation of particular quantum circuits, which may inform the development of a practical quantum computer, which is still at an early stage. This has implications across many areas, including cybersecurity.

“In addition, he used Open Source code to parallelise quantum simulation on graphical processing units that is significantly quicker than other available simulators and this work has already come to the attention of key industry leaders.

“Adam’s contributions are underpinned by a fluency in what is a highly technical and complex field which hugely impressed the judges.”

Minister for Education and Skills, Joe McHugh, said he was delighted to present the BT Young Scientist of the Year perpetual trophy to Adam Kelly.   

“It is a phenomenal achievement,” said Minister McHugh. “I took the time to see for myself the range and scale of talent, innovation and dedication that students put into the BT Young Scientist competition and everyone who took part deserves a massive congratulations.
“The atmosphere of excitement, creativity and fun at the RDS was incredible.

“I am particularly pleased to see so many young people tackling some of the most important issues facing us, from climate change to health, to technology, ethics and societal change.

“The students are a credit to their families, schools and teachers and they should rightly be proud of being here. They are a huge inspiration.”
Minister McHugh added: “I’d like to thank everyone involved in the unique and brilliant event that the BTYSTE is: the organisers, the 81 judges, the dedicated teachers, and, of course, the mothers, fathers and families whose support is absolutely key to this.”

The number of project entries has almost tripled from 606 in 2000 to an impressive 1,803 in 2019, with entries submitted from across the island of Ireland.

Read the digital editions of the Dublin People Northside East, Northside West & Southside here