|Born||1994 (age 18–19)|
|Residence||Tralee, County Kerry, Ireland|
|Known for||Examining sandbags|
|Notable awards||BT Young Scientist of the Year (2008)|
Emer Jones (born 1994) is an Irish student from Tralee, County Kerry. She was the winner of the 44th Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition in 2008 at the age of thirteen. becoming the competition's youngest ever winner at that time. She was also the first winner from County Kerry and won in the year her school first entered the competition.
Jones is a former student of Presentation School in Tralee. Her father, John, is an engineering lecturer at the Institute of Technology, Tralee (ITT) and her mother is a schoolteacher at the local primary school. She has been interested in science from a very young age, once asking for several science books from Santa Claus as a child. Her project at the exhibition was titled "Research and Development of Emergency Sandbag Shelters". Her intention was to examine how stable the materials used to make these sandbags actually were. She based her research on the sandbag shelter created by the Cal-Earth Institute's Nader Khalili. She was also encouraged by the scale of recent natural disasters, claiming to want to help humanity with her research. Jones's "practical application" was praised by judges.
Jones won the Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition at the RDS, Dublin on 11 January 2008. The announcement was made at an evening ceremony in the exhibition hall. Her prize was a €5,000 cheque and a trophy of Waterford Crystal. Jones was presented with the award by Minister for Education and Science Mary Hanafin. Her seven-year-old brother, Robert, was also present. She returned to school the following Monday where a celebration was held marking her achievement. Her town honoured her two months later by making her Grand Marshal of the 2008 Saint Patrick's Day parade in Tralee.
She went on to represent Ireland at the 20th European Union Contest for Young Scientists in Copenhagen, Denmark in September 2008. Jones returned to the Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition at its launch in 2009 to be introduced on stage by Ray D'Arcy and Aoibhinn Ní Shúilleabháin before President of Ireland Mary McAleese made an appearance.
In September 2009, Jones scored 12 A's in her Junior Certificate, the highest score in County Kerry and joint 1st in the country with nine other students. Five months later, she returned to the Young Scientist Exhibition for the third year in succession, this time for coming second place in a science essay competition.
Jones is also an alumnus of CTYI, the Centre of Talented Youth of Ireland, which accepts students based on exceptional academic ability, and only those in the top 5% intelligence in the country. She returned as a TA in 2012 for the 21st Century Technology Skills course.
- Louise Hogan and Conor Bartley (12 January 2008). "Sandbags study helps Emer to top prize at awards". Irish Independent. Retrieved 15 January 2010.
- "Kerry student wins Young Scientist of the Year". RTÉ. 11 January 2008. Retrieved 15 January 2010.
- Patricia McDonagh (14 January 2008). "Santa's gift puts Emer on road to stunning science win". Irish Independent. Retrieved 15 January 2010.
- Jason O'Brien Kathryn Hayes, Brian McDonald and Paddy Clancy (18 March 2008). "Big crowds flock to day of fun in the sun". Irish Independent. Retrieved 15 January 2010. "In Tralee, the parade was led by young scientist of the year, Emer Jones (13)."
- Dick Ahlstrom (8 January 2009). "Gravity-defying motorcyclists give young scientists a touch of vroom". The Irish Times. Retrieved 15 January 2010. "President Mary McAleese was on hand yesterday to launch the exhibition along with drummers and an eight-foot robot. [...] The Unity Drummers played while the cage was rolled out of the BT Arena and then co-presenters Ray D'Arcy and Aoibheann Ní Shúilleabháin introduced last year's BT Young Scientist, Emer Jones, who at 13 was the youngest winner yet in the exhibition which is now in its 45th year. BT chief executive officer Chris Clark introduced Mrs McAleese who roundly congratulated the students for their achievement in being accepted to display their projects at the RDS."
- Strange, Amy (18 August 2011). "Scientific approach gets Emer 600 points". The Irish Times.