Short films from finalists of the #ThisIsEngineering2021 competition for third level engineering students were shown at the 'This is Engineering…' Short Film Festival screening on March 16, 2021, sponsored by Engineers Ireland West Region in collaboration with SFI MaREI Centre and NUI Galway.
Imaginative and engaging videos
The aim was to explain engineering to primary and secondary school students through original, imaginative and engaging videos that arrest, entertain, provoke thought and showcase engineering.
The competition was run as part of Engineers Week 2021 and was free to enter for all students registered on an engineering degree programme in a third level institution on the island of Ireland. There were entries from nine third level institutions on the Island of Ireland – Waterford IT, IT Carlow, UCD, DCU, Ulster University, IT Sligo, GMIT, NUI Galway and UL.
There were two categories – short films targeted at students aged between 5-12 years (category 1) and 13-18 years (category 2). In a break from the norm, there were two winners in this category not just because of their brilliance, but also their marked differences.
The first joint winner was Piotr Kirschke who is studying biomedical engineering at Galway Mayo Institute of Technology. The judges commended him for his use of animation to engage, entertain, provoke thought and showcase engineering to children. Piotr showed the importance of creativity in engineering and how engineers use theirs skills to solve problems and improve our everyday lives.
The second joint winner was Darren Costello who is studying sustainable energy engineering at Waterford Institute of Technology. The judges commended Darren for the inspirational words that both children and adults can relate to.
Children are natural engineers who use their imagination and creativity to investigate, learn and solve problems every day. In order to tackle the challenges our world is currently facing, we need more adults who dream big and use their skills to make these dreams come true.
In the second caterogy, which is short films targeted at students aged between 13-18 years old, there were first, second and third prizes of value €200, €100 and €50 awarded, respectively. In fact, there was a joint third prize winners.
The first joint third prize winner was Jamin Alice who is studying biomedical engineering at Ulster University. The judges commended Alice for a very clear explanation of engineering as a combination of scientific knowledge, creativity and abstract thinking, but did note that Elon Musk is not a qualified engineer.
The second joint third prize winner was Claudia George who is studying chemical and bioprocess engineering at UCD. The judges commended her for fun and colourful video, showing us how engineering makes our everyday lives possible.
The second prize winner in the secondary school category was Aidan Lee who is studying mechanical engineering at UCD. The judges commended Aidan for explaining the importance of maths and physics in engineering. He showed us examples of some really cool projects that he has done as part of his engineering course.
And the first prize winner in the secondary school category was Mary O’Donnell who is studying aeronautical engineering at UL. The judges commended her for her inspirational video seeding the passion for engineering and showing that there is much more to engineering than just hard work. There is a reward for thinking outside the box, and the reward is the amazing world around us.
This was the inaugural ‘This is Engineering…’ film festival, but Engineers Ireland West Region plan to run the competition again in 2022 and would love to get entries from students in all third level institutions on the island of Ireland who have engineering degree programmes. So watch out for the announcement of next year’s ‘This is Engineering...’ video competition in early 2022 as part of Engineers Week 2022.