9 primary schools take home awards as creativity of “leaders of the future” hailed

Amelia Walsh and Cormac Phelan from Our Lady’s National School in Carlow named among competition winners

National Broadband Ireland (NBI), the company delivering the National Broadband Plan (NBP), hosted 100 primary school students, from Junior Infants to Sixth Class, at an event at the Barretstown fun camp in Kildare for the presentation of prizes to the winners of the national final of the “Imagine the Future” competition.
The competition invited students in the 679 schools in the NBP intervention area to create a piece of art to represent the world of possibilities that will be opened up by high-speed broadband.
Project entries ranged from robot surgeons to interactive classrooms where VR headsets transport you to Ancient Egypt to wander around the pyramids. A key theme across the shortlisted entries was the focus on solar powered systems to reduce the impact of fossil fuels.
NBI Chairman David McCourt presented the top prize to DJ Poff from Boheshill National School, Co. Kerry whose project imagined a world of hydro-powered cars, solar-powered shoes, and homes built on raised platforms to allow plants and animals to live freely in their natural habitat. The project also highlighted the use of artificial intelligence [AI] to monitor our homes and reduce theft. Mr McCourt said:
“NBI is proud to be bringing next generation fibre broadband to the next generation. Primary school students all over Ireland are already seeing the benefit of high speed fibre broadband connections in the classroom and the “Imagine the Future” competitors have shown amazing creativity in representing the possibilities it opens up. These young artists are the leaders of the future and we can be in no doubt it is in safe hands when we see the ingenuity on display today. We are on track to be one of the first countries in Europe to provide high-speed broadband to 100% of the population which is going to lead to long term economic opportunities for the children of today.”
Ryan Tubridy, one of the competition judges, said:
“I was delighted when NBI asked me to be one of the judges for the “Imagine the Future” competition and I had no doubt Ireland’s primary school kids were going to impress. In fact I was even more amazed than I expected. I love to see the imagination of our young people at work and combining it with the world of possibility enabled by new technology led them to create some really special work. Each entry told a unique story and I want to congratulate them all and of course pay tribute to the hard work of their teachers in primary schools all over the country.”