Over 5,000 young people across 6 locations will participate in MegaDojo.ie 2018

Minister of State for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, launched MegaDojo.ie 2018 which will be the world’s largest free youth coding event. The Minister was joined at the launch today by Presidents and representatives of the participating 3rd level Institutions, at which she announced the investment of €18.5 million in Dundalk Institute of Technology. This forms part of an overall €11.9 billion investment in education.

Third level Institutes of Technology in Limerick, Cork, Tralee, Dundalk, Letterkenny, and Maynooth University are hosting MegaDojos this year. With support from CoderDojo Ireland, CoderDojo MidWest and the Higher Education Authority, the Institutes are teaming up with CoderDojo clubs from across Ireland and inviting young people aged from 7-17 to learn to code games, websites, electronic kits and more. There will also be opportunities to see and hear what the cutting-edge technology companies are doing in their region. At 5000 plus, the number of young people participating will be higher than ever, and it will be the largest coordinated free youth coding event in the world. This year this event is part of Codeweek EU.

This will be the fourth MegaDojo.ie in Ireland; 2015 saw 512 young people learn to code in LIT. Then 2016 saw the numbers grow to 1024. In 2017, with the addition of a second MegaDojo.ie site in Maynooth University, the numbers of school-aged children reached was 2048. With an ethos of accessibility to technology at its core, CoderDojo Ireland are proud to announce that all computers and equipment required will be provided, to encourage participants who may not have access to computers to attend.

On Saturday, 13th October, there will be “tech talks” from some of Irelands leading tech ambassadors. Speakers include Dr Niall Smith, Head of Research at Cork Institute of Technology will be giving an “Outer Space” talk, and Stephen Howell from Microsoft Ireland will deliver a talk on “Micro:bit” and “Minecraft” in Limerick Institute of Technology. There will also be demonstrations at each location showcasing technology such as VEX Robotics, the army bomb disposal team, the RSA, the RNLI and displays from tech industries.

The first MegaDojo in 2015 was organised to reach a wider audience and give young people, who might not normally have exposure to coding, an opportunity to create their own content. Seeing first-hand what companies in the local region are achieving using technology is invaluable to them to enable them to make more informed further education and career choices.” Eugene McDonough, MegeDojo.ie Co-Founder

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