Students win praise for sustainability efforts

The Economical Environmentalists team at Carrickfergus College came joint first in the AES Eco-Challenge along with Ulidia Integrated College.  'AES, in partnership with Business in the Community, developed the innovative sustainability project for post-primary schools in the East Antrim Area.  Pictured are team members Noah Barnley, Marc Cummings and Philip Lindsay.  INCT 06-726-CON
The Economical Environmentalists team at Carrickfergus College came joint first in the AES Eco-Challenge along with Ulidia Integrated College. 'AES, in partnership with Business in the Community, developed the innovative sustainability project for post-primary schools in the East Antrim Area. Pictured are team members Noah Barnley, Marc Cummings and Philip Lindsay. INCT 06-726-CON

Students from two post-primary schools in Carrickfergus have been named joint winners of a green business competition.

Pupils from Ulidia Integrated College and Carrickfergus College took part in the AES Eco Challenge.

Pictured are Jamie Davison, Darcy Burrows, Grace Carson and Blake McAllister from Ulidia Integrated College.  The team joined the AES Eco-Challenge during November 2014 with the idea of creating a free app to support KS3 science and geography learners.  The app can now be downloaded via the school's website.  INCT 06-722-CON

Pictured are Jamie Davison, Darcy Burrows, Grace Carson and Blake McAllister from Ulidia Integrated College. The team joined the AES Eco-Challenge during November 2014 with the idea of creating a free app to support KS3 science and geography learners. The app can now be downloaded via the school's website. INCT 06-722-CON

Run in partnership with Business in the Community, the Dragon’s Den-style competition challenged them to develop a proposal for a sustainability-themed initiative in their area.

Each team received funding from AES in January 2015 to put their plan into action.

Ulidia were successful with their Energy App, while Carrick College won recognition for their garden at the Amphitheatre Mill Ponds.

Leading Ulidia’s project were Darcy Burrows, Grace Carson, Jamie Davidson, and Blake McAlister from year 12.

“The college has a close working relationship with ISL recycling which was made closer through the AES Eco-Challenge project,” a spokesperson for the school said.

“ISL recycling provided support as the group went about developing their app. ISL also welcomed the team to their plant in Mallusk where the team learnt about the recycling process.”

Meanwhile, Carrickfergus College’s ‘Economical Environmentalists’ team of Noah Barnley, Marc Cummings and Philip Lindsay developed of a sensory garden.

Plants were strategically chosen for their smell, colour and touch, while bird boxes, hedgehog homes, recycling bins and bird feeders were placed.

“Being able to see a project from the initial stage, through to pitching proposals, gaining funding, managing a large budget, working with partner organisations to final presentations has been phenomenal,” a spokesperson for the school said.

The competition was judged by Davy Elliott from AES, who added: “The innovation and organisational skills displayed by the teams were outstanding. They had to address and overcome the same hurdles that business people face when trying to get a project completed.”