28 September 2018: Maths Week 2018 has been launched by Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton TD. The world’s largest national maths festival returns for 2018 and is set to attract participation from as many as 300,000 people.
Open to all, Maths Week 2018 will see a wide variety of fun and engaging maths themed events taking place all over the island of Ireland, north and south, featuring mathematicians and entertainers. Schools and clubs are encouraged to hold their own events to support budding mathematicians.
Co-ordinated by Calmast, Waterford Institute of Technology’s STEM Outreach Centre and funded through the Science Foundation Ireland Discover Programme, the Department of Education and Skills, Matrix - the Northern Ireland Science Industry Panel, ESB and Xilinx. It is run with more than 50 partner organisations including the universities, institutes of technology, libraries, schools, training colleges and employers.
Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton T.D said, “I am delighted to launch Maths Week 2018. Essential for our daily lives, there has been an increased emphasis on maths and numeracy at a national level, in line with our overall progress in the area of STEM-related subjects. Today maths offers opportunities for both young and old alike, whether it is the opportunity to pursue a chosen career path or providing day-to-day skills such as enhanced financial management and budgeting. Maths Week is now firmly established as a driver of maths promotion in Ireland and I would encourage everyone to experience the engaging and informative 2018 programme.”
Minister for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development, John Halligan TD, said: “The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation is delighted to support Science Foundation Ireland’s important work in stimulating interest in STEM subjects. Maths plays a hugely significant role in research and business, and Maths Week helps us to foster innovation and inspire our young people to explore careers in these areas.”
A number of special events are taking place this year for Maths Week including Professor Reidun Twarock, who will speak to secondary school students in the National Concert Hall on October 15th on how Maths can be used to model viruses, which allows us to make medicines to fight them and cure diseases.
Full programme details are available on the Maths Week website www.mathsweek.ie with ongoing event and programme updates available in advance and during Maths Week via Facebook (@MathsWeek2018) and Twitter (@mathsweek).
Some notable Maths Week 2018 events include:
Maths in the City Dublin on South King Street and St Stephens Green (family event): October 13th
The Hamilton Walk (Dublin), Dunsink Observatory: October 13th
Murderous Maths in the Helix: Oct 15th
Professor Reidun Twarock, ‘Tackling Viruses with Maths’, at the National Concert Hall (Dublin): October 15th
The Engima Project, Waterford Institute of Technology: Oct 16th
Maths in the City, Belfast Victoria Square: October 20th
Professor David Conlon, ‘Simple Things (We don’t Understand)’ at Marsh’s Library Dublin: October 20th
Celebration of Minds at the Botanic Gardens (family event): October 21st
Margie McCarthy, Interim Director of Innovation and Education, Science Foundation Ireland, said: “Science Foundation Ireland is committed to making STEM accessible to all and to developing and nurturing STEM talent in Ireland. Through the SFI Discover Programme we aim to encourage and empower young people and their families to explore subjects like maths; to break down barriers and to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills they can use in their lives. Through festivals such as Maths Week, students can be inspired and have the potential to be part of the next generation of innovators, creative thinkers and problem solvers.”
Eoin Gill, Maths Week Ireland Co-Ordinator said, “Working with our many partners, the Maths Week vision is simple, ‘Maths for All’. Maths and numbers are all around us and this short statement encapsulates the relevance of maths across society, and what we want to achieve via the annual national programme of activity - people of all ages embracing maths and numerical ability to benefit their day-to-day lives.”
“2018 marks the 13th year of Maths Week and with participation set to be in the region of 300,000, our highest figure yet. We are excited to bring another action packed programme to people all over the island of Ireland, and the ever increasing number of participants is testament to the interest and appetite for maths in Ireland.”
“This growth in popularity and continued success would not be possible without our partners such as the Department of Education, Science Foundation Ireland and MATRIX - the Northern Ireland Science Industry Panel, who make the programme of activity a reality and I would like to thank them for their continued support.”
Maths Week Ireland is the biggest festival of its kind in the world. It has now also been adopted as an initiative by Scotland, in recognition of the important contribution that maths promotion events make in helping young people to have a positive attitude towards maths.
For those interested in hosting their own Maths Week event, large or small, log on to www.mathsweek.ie to find out how you can get involved.