Following on from our announcement of the ReelLife Science 2013 Primary School Winners on Tuesday, we’re delighted to bring you the Top Three Secondary School Videos in the inaugural ReelLife Science schools video competition.

In third place, under the category “The Environment”, we have a video about “Littering” made by Claregalway College First Year student Natasha Feery Byrne, under the guidance of her teacher Ms. Nolan. In the words of Special Guest Judge Prof. Rhodri Ceredig “the video has a very commendable and engaging cartoon style presentation, with a nice message“. Like ReelLife Science, Claregalway College is in its very first year of existence, but they have really engaged with the competition and we look forward to receiving more videos from them in the future! Natasha will receive over €100 worth of scientific equipment and resources for her school’s Science program. 

In second place, under the “Stem Cells” category, we have a video produced by St. Mary’s College Second Year students Mark Gilligan, Josh Pyne, Alan Duggan and Shane Hastings and Leaving Certificate student Colm Barry, with the help of their teacher Mr. Carey. This well-acted and imaginative film sees two young “stem cells” who haven’t yet decided on a career path, meet their knowledgeable Careers Officer, who briefs them on the options available to multipotent, pluripotent and even induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs).

Both Special Guest Judge Professors Ceredig and Brand work in the field of Stem Cell Biology, as does ReelLife Science team member and REMEDI PhD student Dave Browe, and all three scientists were extremely impressed with the level of detail communicated in this short movie. The guys will receive over €150 worth of scientific equipment and resources for their school’s Science program.

Finally, in first place, under the “Astrobiology” category, we have a stunning video called “Life in Space” created by the multi-talented St. Enda’s College Transition Year student Michael McAndrew, under the direction of Mr. Fahey and Mr. Conroy. This remarkable film combines a fantastic concept and animation style with an intelligent script, wonderful delivery and original score. The film describes the fascinating field of Astrobiology, encompassing the origin and future of life on earth and the search for extraterrestrial life in other “Goldilocks Zones”. The simple yet effective cartoon style could conceivably be used to explain a range of different scientific topics, and the ReelLife Science team can’t wait to see more of Michael’s excellent work. In Michael’s own words “it is very exciting what the future might bring us“.

Overall, this outstanding production proved a worthy winner of the inaugural ReelLife Science Secondary school competition. We hope Michael and his fellow Transition Year students in St. Enda’s College enjoy spending their €250 on promoting science and science communication.

An honourable mention goes to a video entitled “Crying with Emotion” produced by Transition Year students in Coláiste Chroí Mhuire gan Smal, Spiddal, which along with the videos mentioned above, has been selected by the judges to be shown to the general public at the Galway Science and Technology Festival exhibition on November 24th.

Huge thanks and well done to everyone who took part.

If you liked these videos, please share them with your friends to show them how Science can be fun at any age!

ReelLife Science is supported by the EXPLORE Innovation Initiative and the College of Science at NUI Galway, as well as the “I’m a Scientist…Get me out of here, Ireland” program. Additional prizes were generously donated by Lennox Educational, Medical Supply Company and, in the form of annual subscriptions to their excellent science magazine “Science Spin”.

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