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Discovery Education and 3M Announce 2013 Science Competition Winners

Posted Oct 9, 2013
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Discovery Education and 3M have named 11-year-old Peyton Robertson from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., winner of the 2013 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge for his innovative sandbag design. Every year, millions of dollars of damage are incurred due to salt-water flooding, with the most recent claims being made during last year’s Hurricane Sandy. This prototype aims to help better protect flood zones against salt-water damage from future storms. Robertson, a sixth grader at Stanford University’s Middle School, competed alongside nine other finalists yesterday during a live competition at the 3M Innovation Center in St. Paul, Minn., and was awarded the title of “America’s Top Young Scientist,” $25,000 and a trip to Costa Rica from Discovery Student Adventures.

To download hi-res images and b-roll footage of the science competition, go to

Over the past three months, Robertson and the other finalists had the exclusive opportunity to work directly with a 3M Scientist as they created their personal innovation as part of a summer mentorship program. The 3M Scientists provided guidance to the finalists as they developed their ideas from a theoretical concept into an actual prototype that would help solve a problem in everyday life.

During the final competition, the finalists shared their completed innovations with a panel of distinguished judges. In addition to presenting their prototypes, the 10 finalists competed in two additional challenges where they were asked to: 1) combine multiple 3M technologies to yield new solutions; and 2) build a machine designed to turn on a light bulb using science and engineering principles. Finalists were evaluated on their scientific knowledge, creativity and use of 3M technology. Chris Jacobs, on-air host from Velocity Network, served as master of ceremonies for the awards banquet.

The remaining nine finalists also received a variety of prizes from Discovery Education and 3M. The second, third and fourth place winners each received a $1,000 cash prize and a trip from Discovery Student Adventures to Costa Rica. These extraordinary students are:

  • Brooke Martin from North Central High School in Spokane, Wash. received second place for her innovative device – the iCPooch - that lets pet owners video chat and give their pets a treat while away from home.

  • Srijay Kasturi, a home-school student from Reston, Va., received third place for his innovation that helps the visually impaired detect objects in their path.

  • Daniel Culver from Montrose High School in Montrose, Colo. received fourth place for his innovative indoor cook stove design that greatly reduces harmful CO2 emissions.

The fifth through tenth place winners each received a $1,000 cash prize and a $500 gift card from Discovery Experiences, which offers first-hand, memorable adventures they see and learn about on Discovery's networks. These finalists include:

  • Reeny Botros, homeschooled in Wichita, Kans.

  • Anish Chaluvadi, from Southside High School in Simpsonville, S.C.

  • Tim DeMember, from Windsor Knolls Middle School in Monrovia, Md.

  • Katie Hudek, homeschooled in Grafton, Mass.,

  • Edward Kim, from Midway High School in Waco, Tex.

  • Aishani Sil, from Rice Middle School in Plano, Tex.

For more information on the 2013 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge and to learn more about this year’s finalists, go to

About the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge

As the nation’s premier science competition for middle school students, the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge targets students in the years when research indicates their interest in science begins to fade and encourages them to explore scientific concepts and creatively communicate their findings. In January, students nationwide were asked to create a short video describing a new innovation or solution that would impact an everyday problem related to how we live, how we work or how we play. In addition to the 10 finalists, 34 students were selected as state merit winners in this year’s competition and received their own 3M Innovation Prize Package.

Source: Discovery Education,

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