The STEM Facilitator Programme is an innovative and interactive professional development programme aimed at developing participants’ pedagogical and conceptual knowledge of science.
The aim of the Society's founders in 1731 was to improve Ireland's economic condition by promoting the development of Agriculture, Arts, Industry and Science. Inspired by the founding aims and purpose of the Society, the Foundation Programme supports Irish society by acting as a catalyst to ensure that the coming generations can fulfil their potential. Below is an overview of the projects within the RDS Foundation Programme.
Sheep farming is an important indigenous industry in Ireland that is worth more than €250 million each year to the economy. Through this Award the RDS, in collaboration with Macra na Feirme and the Irish Farmers Journal, acknowledges the importance of this industry.
The RDS Allotment Awards aim to recognise the hard work, dedication and attention to detail that is being undertaken by those involved in allotment gardening and also to promote an area that encourages people to become more aware of rural issues.
The RDS Irish Forestry Awards promote standards of excellence in the production of native forests and trees. The Awards continue the historic involvement of the RDS in the development of Irish forestry which saw over 55 million trees planted in Ireland from 1766 - 1806 through the Society's land improvement and afforestation projects.
Inaugurated in 1899, the Boyle Medal continues to recognise scientific research of exceptional merit and remains to this day Ireland's premier science award.
Through the Speaker Series, the RDS hosts a diverse range of interesting and informative talks by noted speakers for Members of the Society and the general public. This continues a long established tradition of lectures at the Society reaching back over 200 years.
The RDS Primary Science Fair provides a public forum for primary schools across Ireland to showcase their class STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) projects, receive feedback from experts in the field and learn from viewing other projects at a major exhibition, the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition.
The RDS Student Art Awards has an annual prize fund in excess of €16,000. Encompassing the RDS Taylor Art Award which has been awarded since 1860, the Awards are the most prestigious art awards open to registered art students of all award-bearing courses in Ireland.
There has been a history of promoting crafts in the RDS since 1888, when the first of the Society's Art and Industries Exhibitions featuring lace and embroidery was held at the Horse and Sheep Show. The RDS Crafts Competition in its current form was founded in 1968. With a prize fund in excess of €24,000 shared over 20 categories, the RDS National Crafts Competition is one of Europe’s leading independently adjudicated craft competitions.
To commemorate her retirement after 47 years, Mary Kelleher, Archivist/Librarian with the RDS Library, was presented with a festschrift called Auguri meaning 'best wishes' in Italian in January 2009. Contributors to Auguri included Seamus Heaney, Maeve Binchy and Dr Toby Barnard. Copies are available from the Library at a cost of €30.00 per copy.