Photo by Jason Goodman | Unsplash
Although they are teenagers, their research projects are often on par with the works of scientists — the participants in the European EUCYS competition are ambitious and outstanding young science enthusiasts. The following year’s EUCYS finals will take place in September 2024 in Katowice — the European City of Science.
The European Union Contest for Young Scientists is the largest and the most significant event presenting students’ research. This event boasts a long tradition, being organised since 1989.
Things to know
The main objectives of the competition are to encourage young people’s interest in science and to support them in their passions.
The competition is open to submissions in the fields of exact sciences, natural sciences, technology, social sciences, and economics.
Students between the ages of 14 and 21 who have completed their first semester of university by the time of the finals can take part in the competition. The submitted works — theoretic or experimental — can have up to three authors and must be completed before team members enter university. For more details, visit the website of the Polish Children’s Fund.
EUCYS consists of two stages: national eliminations and international finals. The first stage, organised by the Polish Children’s Fund, involves submitting a comprehensive description of the research problem together with the proposed solution and presentation in poster form.
Then, the national organisers select laureates to take part in the international finals. The finals are organised each year in the largest European cities — including those which have received the European City of Science title. In 2024, that city is Katowice.
The beginning of a scientific career
Thus, the best of the best — around 150 finalists — will arrive in Katowice and compete with their peers from other European countries.
‘EUCYS is often a place where young, ambitious people begin their journey into the world of science’, states Paulina Świtała from the University of Silesia, coordinator of the Katowice 2024 finals.
Over the course of six days, participants in the final competition will take part in official and accompanying events, as well as in jury sessions, i.e. meetings with representatives of an international jury that assesses the projects and their presentation. ‘Participants must talk about their project in an original, creative but also comprehensible way, so that not only experts in the field, but also the general public can understand it. This is why — in addition to how innovative a particular project is — great emphasis is placed on the universality of the presentation language’, explains Paulina Świtała.
Each event of this kind is also an opportunity to integrate with the community, exchange experiences, and establish cooperation. In the case of EUCYS, young science enthusiasts will be able to meet and talk to renowned scientists who will mentor them and perhaps guide them in their choice of further education path.
Promoting the potential of Katowice
Katowice receiving the European City of Science 2024 title is the result of the efforts of the City of Katowice and the seven public universities that make up the Academic Consortium Katowice City of Science.
Hosting the finals of the EUCYS competition is an opportunity to showcase the research potential of Katowice and the region to the visitors — participants and their scientific supervisors but also representatives of the European Commission or foreign journalists.
‘We will show that Katowice — a strong academic centre — is an excellent place to study and conduct one’s scientific career. We also wish to showcase our research potential, the rapidly developing metropolis, the transformation of the city, and how our region keeps on changing. And science is the driving force behind all these changes’, emphasises Paulina Świtała.