Tech & Innovation

James Whelton teams up with Trend Micro

By Business & Finance
02 April 2014
What's your Story Competition

Global cloud security firm, Trend Micro is calling on young students and coders from primary and secondary schools to tell their digital success stories and promote online privacy in this year’s ‘What’s Your Story’ competition.

Now it’s in third year, the competition is open to school goers in Ireland aged 8 years and older, and seeks to give young people a voice on the topic of cyber safety, online privacy and the great success that the Internet offers.

In line with this year’s theme, Trend Micro has teamed up with CoderDojo founder and tech entrepreneur James Whelton to encourage students to get creative, have fun online and promote digital privacy to their peers through a video message, poster, they can even submit a video of an app they have created.

“We’re asking individuals, groups of friends, classmates and entire schools to enter this competition with a unique two minute video or poster that is focused on promoting online success combined with digital safety. We want young people, parents and teachers to be safe, savvy and responsible in their approach to the internet and smart devices,” explains Avril Ronan, global programme manager for Internet Safety at Trend Micro.

“Kids need to use technology, as it offers them tremendous opportunities for learning, working, sharing and having fun.  It is a big part of their future and future employment too. We want them to inspire us with their creativity and innovative thinking when it comes to how they achieve success online while protecting their privacy, reputation and safety.”

Coding advocate and serial entrepreneur, James Whelton expressed his support for the ‘What’s Your Story’ competition. “Creating using technology is the most wonderful and awesome thing ever – whether its coding apps, sites or games, video production or even digital art, this competition gives kids a voice to express how they feel about the internet and the tech world. We need young people to embrace technology, hack it to it’s full potential and know how to be safe in that adventure,” said Whelton.

What's your Story Competition

Pictured at the launch are last year’s winners Tess and Judith Ehiguese, St Joseph’s College Lucan and Avril Ronan, Trend Micro.

The competition is back after a hugely successful debut in 2012 when Colaiste na Toirbhirte from Bandon won the competition for their video called ‘Hiding Online’ which promoted safety online and how to stop cyberbullying.

Last year’s ‘Whats Your Story’ winners, Judith and Tessy Ehiguese of St Joseph’s College in Lucan won the overall prize of €3,000 for their school for their video entitled ‘Internet Sensation’ for which they recorded a backing track, a snappy theme song with super lyrics and a music video fit for MTV.

“Our approach was to inspire many young people who watched our video about the good side of the Internet! We tried to make it as fun, catchy and creative as much as possible. We’re sending a message out to young people everywhere to try their best at what they’re good at and to never give up! Once you love what you’re doing, the sky’s the limit!” said Judith Ehiguese.

Not only will youngsters have fun entering the Trend Micro competition but there are some great cash prizes up for grabs also. Winners of the overall prize category will receive €3,000 for their school, with the individual prize winner receiving a cheque for €1,500. Category winners for film will receive €500 each and poster winners will receive €250. There are two categories split by ages 8-12 years or 13+ years. The ‘What’s Your Story’ site is live now and will be open for competition entries until April 22nd 2014.

Public voting will continue until May 6th when those with the highest views and ratings are shortlisted for judging by an independent panel.

“We want to encourage young people not only to have a voice but to use social media to spread the word, become advocates of their own message and gain votes from friends, family and schools,” added Trend Micro’s Avril Ronan.