24 August 2018

The next Steve Jobs or Bill Gates could be among the hundreds of primary and high school students to compete at the Young ICT Explorers competition at UQ this weekend. 

Program Director Travis Joy said the goal was to inspire students to use their creativity and innovation skills to think about the technology of the future.

“The competition allows students to create almost anything with technology, giving them the opportunity to showcase these amazing ideas to the ICT community and get valuable feedback and encouragement from leaders in the field,” he said. 

“Students also advance their problem solving skills, team work and presentation skills by working on and displaying their projects.”

Queensland Minister for Digital Technology Mick de Brenni will open the two-day event.

Students will apply what they have learned in their digital classrooms and develop a technology related project to pitch to industry leaders and academics.

 “We have kept the scope of the competition broad to encourage as much STEM creativity as possible through the use of ICT and digital technologies,” Mr Joy said. 

“We don’t want to limit possibilities for projects that are new and unheard of.”

Judges will assess student performance in four key areas – creativity and innovation; level of difficulty; quality; and communication and presentation.

UQ School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering Head Professor Michael Bruenig said the competition was an ideal opportunity for students to learn about the possibilities of a career in computing.

“We are extremely proud to host this event every year and to connect with young students who are already embracing hands-on experience on technological projects,” he said.

“It’s always exciting to see what their young minds are able to come up with, giving us an insight into the next generation of IT professionals.

“With computing and electrical engineering graduates in high demand, this is a field that will only continue to grow.”

There will be plenty of vision opportunities from the team’s projects and presentations.

What: Young ICT Explorers

Where: The University of Queensland

When: Saturday 25 August

Best time for media: 9:15am -10:30am

Media: School of IT and Electrical Engineering, Research and Outreach, Dr Marie Boden, 0435 378 865.