The 31st EU Contest for Young Scientists (EUCYS) took place on 13-18 September in Sofia, Bulgaria. Over 150 young scientists – pupils aged between 15 and 19 years old – from 39 countries presented their research projects to the public and to a jury composed of prominent scientists from around the world. The participants had all previously won first prizes in national competitions before being selected for EUCYS. The 100 projects presented at EUCYS2019 covered a broad range of scientific areas including biology, physics, chemistry, computing, social sciences, environment, mathematics, materials, engineering and medicine.
EUCYS is the biggest science fair for young students in the EU. It is part of the Science with and for Society programme funded under Horizon 2020. The aim of the contest is to attract young people to a career in science and research.
This year’s event was the largest so far. One of the guests of honour at the event was Ms Mariya Gabriel, the current Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, and Commissioner-nominee for Innovation and Youth.
Claire Lee from Brookhaven National Laboratory and the ATLAS experiment presented a talk entitled “Building Blocks of the Universe” to the young audience at the adjacent Comic Con festival. Dr Lee took also part in a panel discussion at EUCYS2019 on the theme of European Science in 2050: challenges and opportunities.
CERN, together with the other EIROforum organisations, awards special prizes at EUCYS, consisting of a one-week visit to its facilities and experiments. This year’s winners of the CERN Special Prize were three young Polish scientists who designed a drone that could return from the lower layers of the stratosphere with a scientific payload to the launch location. More information about the project can be found here: https://eucys.eu/projects-2019/high-altitude-micro-air-vehicle/. The EIROforum prizes were presented to EUCYS2019 winners by Ms Charlotte Warakaulle, Director for International Relations at CERN.
The three winners from Poland will visit CERN in summer 2020.