Previous Young Scientist winners: where are they now?

Ever wondered what became of all those bright young minds who collected the Young Scientist title over the years? Well wonder no more.

The 2013 Young Scientist winners
The 2013 Young Scientist winners

1965: John Monahan (Newbridge College, Co Kildare)

- Project: ‘Demonstrating chemical reactions during digestion’

- Education: Biochemistry at UCD. PhD in biochemistry from McMaster University, Ontario.

- Where is he now? Vice-president, research and development at the cutting edge Synthetic Biologics, California.

1966: Mary Finn (Ursuline Convent, Co Sligo)

- Project: ‘Proof of the four-colour problem in topology’

- Education: BSc in physics and mathematics at UCC.

- Where is she now? Science teacher at Dublin school.

1967: Walter Hayes (St Vincent’s CBS, Glasnevin, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘Salmonellis in Mice: A study of etiology, cause and effect of the disease on the host’

- Education: Languages at TCD.

- Where is he now? Teaching English in Africa.

1968: George Reynolds (St James CBS, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘Geophysical study of an iron mine’

- Education: Earth sciences at TCD; Masters in geophysics Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies; earth sciences degree in Spain; MBA degree.

- Where is he now? Management consulting in Ireland.

1969: Luke Drury (Wesley College, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘Construction and use of a spectro-photometer to investigate complex ion formation in a transitional metal’

- Education: BSc in physics at TCD; PhD in astrophysics from Cambridge.

- Where is he now? Astrophysicist at Max Planck Institute of Nuclear Physics, Germany.

1970: Maria Edgeworth (Convent of Mercy, Co Longford)

- Project: ‘Extract and investigate pigments from flowers’

- Education: BSc in physics from TCD; diploma in international studies from Nice.

- Where is she now? Set up Government Equine Diagnostic Laboratory at Coolmore Stud, Co Tipperary; working as a biochemist.

1971: Peter Short (Presentation Convent, Clane, Co Kildare)

- Project: ‘A survey of Lough Bollard’

- Where is he now? Set up his own company, Pharma Buy.

1972: John Birmingham (Colaiste Mhuire, Co Dublin)

- Education: BSc in biochemistry from Dundee University.

- Where is he now? Unilever Laboratories in Cheshire, England.

1973: Tadhg Begley (North Monastery CBS, Cork)

- Project: ‘Minerals and pollutants in seawater’

- Education: BSc in chemistry from UCC; PhD in organic chemistry from California Institute of Technology; University of Geneva; and MIT.

- Where is he now? Associate professor of chemistry at Cornell University.

1974: Richard Elliott (Portora Royal School, Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh)

- Project: ‘Use of computer techniques to provide mathematical models of biological situations’

- Education: Trained as a surgeon in Edinburgh; cardiothoracic surgery; occupational toxicology.

- Where is he now? Epidemiologist at HSE medical sciences unit in Liverpool.

1975: Noel Boyle (Westmeath)

- Project: ‘Construction of a spectrophotometer’

- Education: BA and MB from Trinity College Dublin; research at St James’s Hospital, Dublin.

- Where is he now? Professor of medicine at UCLA in California.

1976: Mary Kelly-Quinn (Our Lady’s Secondary School, Castleblayney, Co Monaghan)

- Project: ‘The existence of minerals by means of analysing rock slides; to carry out a geophysical survey aimed at verifying direction and depth of veins and mineral outcrops’

- Education: Degree, PhD and post-doctoral research in zoology at UCD and TCD.

- Where is she now? UCD lecturer in Department of Zoology.

1977: Micheál Óg Ó Briain (Colaiste Mhuire, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘An integrated study of the scientific conservation of Rogerstown Estuary, Co Dublin’

- Education: BSc in zoology from UCD; co-organised and took part in three Irish Brent Goose Expeditions to Arctic.

- Where is he now? Appointed to Environmental Directorate of the European Community.

1978: Donald McDonnell (Crescent College, Dooradoyle, Co Limerick)

- Project: ‘A study of effect of proven pollution on ecological balance in the Shannon at Limerick’

- Education: BSc in biochemistry from NUIG (now UCG); PhD in cell biology at Baylor College of Medicine, Texas; Glaxo-Wellcome professor of molecular cancer biology at Duke University in North Carolina since 1994.

- Where is he now? Head of molecular biology at Ligand Pharmaceuticals, California.

1979: Jervis Good (Midleton College, Co Cork)

- Project: ‘The concept of ecopolemiology as illustrated by a preliminary study of the bionomics of the earwig’

- Education: Won the YS after dropping out of school with Leaving Cert; graduated from Trinity with BSc and then PhD from UCC in zoology.

- Where is he now? Freelance environmental consultant.

1980: Karen Ruddock (Alexandra College, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘Lichens in relation to their environment’

- Education: BSc in natural sciences from Trinity; HDip in education; Masters in applied linguistics.

- Where is she now? Japanese language and culture lecturer at Trinity.

1981: Catherine Conlon (Muckross Park, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘Physical, biochemical and anatomical aspects of the spider and its web’

- Education: Degree in medicine from UCD; Masters in public health from UCD.

- Where is she now? Public health lecturer.

1982: Martynn Sheehan (Convent of Mercy, Moate, Co Westmeath)

- Project: ‘Lichens may be used for medicine’

- Education: BSc from UCG.

- Where is she now? Validation manager with Elan Corporation, Athlone, Co Westmeath.

1983: William Murphy, Gareth Clarke & Turan Mirza (Carrickfergus Grammar School, Co Antrim)

- Project: ‘Microcomputer based robotics’

- Education: William studied computer science at University of Ulster. Gareth completed education in technology degree from Queen’s University, Belfast.

- Where are they now? William is an IT consultant. Gareth teaches computers and technology in Canada.

1984: Eoin Walsh (Colaiste Choilm CBS, Swords, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘Simulation of Drude electron theory and kinetic theory of gases’

- Education: Experimental physics from Trinity; post-graduate research at TCD.

- Where is he now? Vice president of Morgan Stanley bank.

1985: Ronan McNulty (St Mary’s College, Rathmines, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘The musical typewriter — A system which prints music as you play’

- Education: Mathematical and experimental physics at UCD; PhD in particle physics at University of Liverpool.

- Where is he now? Physics lecturer at UCD. (See page 15)

1986: Breda Maguire & Niamh Mulvany (Rosary College, Raheny, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘Focus on the viola tricolour — An indepth study on Bull Island’

- Education: Breda studied natural sciences at Trinity; post-grad in business studies at UCD. Niamh graduated with degree in botany from Trinity; qualified as reiki master.

- Where are they now? Breda is business manager with Smiths Medical, Co Dublin. Niamh is working to complete homeopathy qualification.

1987: Henry Byrne & Emma Donnellan (FCJ Secondary School, Bunclody, Co Wexford)

- Project: ‘Fibre optic liquid analyser’

- Education: Henry studied mechanical and manufacturing engineering at Trinity. Emma attained a masters degree in marketing.

- Where are they now? Henry is development manager for Roadstone Provinces. Emma is global consumer planner with Diageo.

1988: Siobhan Lanigan O’Keeffe (Navan Community College, Co Meath)

- Project: ‘Geothermal study of the River Skane’

- Education:

- Where is she now? Working with Ulster Wildlife.

1989: Grace O’Connor & Sinead Finn (Ursuline Convent Thurles, Co Tipperary)

-Project: ‘A study on a crop fractation industry’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Education: Grace did a masters in medical oncology at University of Manchester; pharmacy degree in Sunderland. Sinead studied Italian and history at UCD.

- Where are they now? Grace is a pharmacist in Dublin.

1990: Annagh Minchin-Dalton (Alexandra College, Miltown, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘Studies of the oyster thief’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Education: BSc in rural resource development from Anglia Polytechnic University; masters from University of Reading.

- Where is she now? Working as a marine biologist.

1991: Barry O’Doherty & Daniel Dundas (St Patrick’s College, Maghera, Co Derry)

- Project: ‘Dynamics of a two-well potential oscillator’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Education: BSc in physics with astrophysics from Queen’s University Belfast; MSc in opto-electronics and optical information processing; PGCE in physics with science. Daniel received a PhD in theoretical physics from Queen’s University Belfast.

- Where are they now? Barry is teaching in Belfast.

1992: Elizabeth Dowling & Jean Byrne (St Paul’s Secondary School, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘A picture winged insect population dynamics of a thistle predator Terellia serratulae’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Education: Elizabeth studied science at Tallaght RTC. Jean studied science at Trinity; masters in environmental resource management at UCD.

- Where are they now? Elizabeth works for FBD Insurance. Jean works as a remote sensing specialist at Era Maptec in Dublin.

1993: Donal Keane & Rodger Toner (Abbey Grammar School, Newry, Co Down)

- Project: ‘Assessment of female quality by male gammarus’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Education: Donal studied aeronautics at Imperial College, London; finance at Queen’s University Belfast. Rodger studied medicine in London.

- Where are they now? Donal works for financial software consultancy firm First Derivatives. Rodger is a doctor in London.

1994: Jane Feehan (St Brendan’s Community School, Birr, Co Offaly)

- Project: ‘The secret life of the calluna case-carrier’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Education: Biological sciences at Oxford; attained PhD from TCD.

- Where is she now? Working with Irish Environmental Protection Agency and European Environment Agency, Denmark.

1995: Brian Fitzpatrick & Shane Markey (Abbey Grammar School, Newry, Co Down)

- Project: ‘Factors affecting cavitation in whole plants, leaves and vascular bundles using acoustic detection’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Education: Brian studied medicine at TCD. Shane studied dentistry.

- Where are they now? Brian works at Altnagelvin Hospital, Derry. Shane is a dentist in New York.

1996: Elsie O’Sullivan, Rowena Mooney & Patricia Lyle (Scoil Mhuire Portalington, Co Laois)

- Project: ‘The perfect queen bee’ EUCYS THIRD PRIZE.

- Education: Elsie qualified as a vet from UCD. Rowena studied business managment at DIT. Patricia received a commerce degree and masters in accountancy from UCD.

- Where are they now? Elsie is a vet. Rowena works for Ryanair. Patricia is works for KPMG.

1997: Ciara McGoldrick, Emma McQuillan & Fiona Fraser (Dominican College, Belfast, Co Antrim)

- Project: ‘Unravelling the secrets of the preservation of Europe’s bog bodies’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Education: Ciara attained degrees in pathology and medicine at Queen’s University Belfast. Emma completed degrees in forensic medicine and medicine from Dundee University. Fiona studied midwifery at University of Melbourne.

- Where are they now? Ciara is a registrar in plastic surgery in Ulster Hospital Belfast. Fiona works in biomedical engineering.

1998: Raphael Hurley (Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown, Cork)

- Project: ‘The mathematics of Monopoly’ EUCYS THIRD PRIZE.

- Education: Maths at UCC.

- Where is he now? Global director of health financing, at Clinton Health Access Initiative in Ethiopia.

1999: Sarah Flannery (Scoil Mhuire Gan Smal, Blarney, Co Cork)

- Project: ‘Cryptography — A new algorithm versus the RSA’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Education: Computer science at Cambridge.

- Where is she now? Data analyst at RockYou, California.

2000: Thomas Gernon (Colaiste Ris, Dundalk, Co Louth)

- Project: ‘The geography and mathematics of the Earth’s urban centres’ EUCYS ALUMNI PRIZE.

- Education: Geology at UCD; PhD in vulcanology at Bristol.

- Where is he now? Geology lecturer at University of Southampton.

2001: Shane Browne, Peter Taylor & Michael O’Toole (St Killan’s Community School, Co Wicklow)

- Project: ‘Investigating symmetrical shapes formed by polygons’ EUCYS THIRD PRIZE.

- Education: Shane studied sciences at UCD. Peter studied maths and science at UCD. Michael studied engineering at DCU.

- Where are they now? Peter is completing a PhD in astrophysics. Shane manages the science division of an executive search firm called HRM in Dublin. Michael is studying engineering at DCU.

2002: David Michael O’Doherty (Gonzaga College, Dublin, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘The distribution of the primes and the underlying order of chaos’ EUCYS SPECIAL PRIZE.

- Education: Studied mathematics with physics at Cambridge.

2003: Adnan Osmani (St Finian’s College, Co Westmeath)

- Project: ‘The graphical technological’

- Education: BSc in applied computer engineering; MSc in computer science from Sheffield University.

2004: Ronan Larkin (Synge Street CBS, Dublin)

- Project: ‘Generalised continued fractions’

- Education: Mechanical engineering at UCD;

- Where is he now? Management scientist at Aer Lingus.

2005: Patrick Collison (Castletroy College, Limerick)

- Project: ‘Croma: A new dialect of Lisp’ EUCYS SECOND PRIZE.

- Education: Attended MIT but dropped out.

- Where is he now? Co-founded Stripe in 2010. Lives in California.

2006: Aisling Judge (Kinsale Community School, Co Cork)

- Project: ‘The development and evaluation of a biological food spoilage indicator’ EUCYS THIRD PRIZE.

- Where is she now? Studying pharmaceuticals at UCD.

2007: Abdusalam Abubakar (Synge Street CBS, Dublin)

- Project: ‘An extension of Wiener's attack on RSA’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE AND HONORARY AWARD.

- Where is he now? Studying financial mathematics at DCU.

2008: Emer Jones (Presentation Secondary School, Tralee, Co Kerry)

- Project: ‘Research and development of emergency sandbag shelters’ EUCYS SECOND PRIZE.

- Where is she now? Studying natural sciences at Cambridge.

2009: Liam McCarthy & John O’Callaghan (Kinsale Community School, Co Cork)

- Project: ‘The development of a convenient test method for somatic cell count and its importance in milk production’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE.

- Where are they now? John is studying bio science at CIT. Liam is studying biotechnology at DCU.

2010: Richard O’Shea (Scoil Mhuire Gan Smal, Blarney, Co Cork)

- Project: ‘A biomass fired cooking stove for developing countries’ EUCYS SPECIAL PRIZE.

- Where is he now? Studying energy engineering at UCC.

2011: Alexander Amini (Castleknock College, Co Dublin)

- Project: ‘Tennis sensor data analysis’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE AND HONORARY AWARD.

- Where is he now? Studying computer science and electrical engineering at MIT.

2012: Mark Kelly & Eric Doyle (Synge Street CBS, Dublin)

- Project: ‘Simulation accuracy in the gravitational many-body problem’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE AND HONORARY AWARD.

- Where are they now? Mark is studying physical and math sciences at UCD. Eric is studying theoretical physics at Trinity.

2013: Émer Hickey, Sophie Healy-Thow & Ciara Judge (Kinsale Community School, Co Cork)

- Project: ‘A statistical investigation of the effects of Diazotroph bacteria on plant germination’ EUCYS FIRST PRIZE AND HONORARY AWARD.

- Where are they now? Studying for their Leaving Cert.


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