UCC starts a new science outreach programme for schools

28 Aug 2017
Photo (from left to right): Members of the Cell EXPLORERS UCC Team, Dr Ashleigh Byrne, Dr Eoin Fleming, Dr Kellie Dean, Rachel Furlong, Brandon Malone and Sinead O’Loughlin.

The School of Biochemistry and Cell Biology at University College Cork has established a new science outreach programme, Cell EXPLORERS UCC, for primary or post-primary schools located in the Cork area.

Glasheen Boys National School in Cork City was the first school to be visited as part of the programme, with fifth and sixth class students getting the chance to put on the white lab coats and do an experiment.

The programme is free for participating schools and is run in partnership with an existing Cell EXPLORERS programme based in NUI Galway (, funded by a Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Discover Award. As part of this programme, two research scientists and lecturers from the School of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Dr Kellie Dean and Dr Eoin Fleming will be running the Fantastic DNA School Roadshow around Cork during the year, especially in the lead up to National Science Week in November 2017.

Dr Fleming explains, “Fantastic DNA is a hands-on science session designed to allow every child to practice science in their own classroom. Budding explorers will discover DNA by extracting DNA from a banana to take home and by building a DNA double helix. The Fantastic DNA Show is here to visit schools throughout the county.”

Dr Dean comments: “The programme is of great benefit to children who are given an opportunity to meet real scientists and practice hands-on science. It also allows our undergraduate and postgraduate students and researchers to share their passion for science and develop key communication skills.”

Teachers who would like for their schools to participate in the programme should contact for further details.

To find out more about Cell EXPLORERS activities and the ‘Fantastic DNA’ roadshow, visit or follow Cell EXPLORERS on Facebook or Twitter.

Cell EXPLORERS activities at UCC and the expansion of the programme to other institutions are funded by the Science Foundation Ireland under its Discover Programme, by the NUI Galway School of Natural Sciences and by the NUI Galway Foundation.

School of Biochemistry and Cell Biology

Scoil na Bithcheimice agus na Cillbhitheolaíochta

University College Cork, Western Road, Cork.