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Discovery Education, 3M Announce Finalists in National Science Competition

Posted Aug 20, 2008
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Discovery Education and 3M have announced the names of 10 middle school students and five science teachers selected as finalists in the 2008 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge (YSC).


The 10 student finalists will compete in the nation's Capital from October 4-6, 2008, for the chance to win a $50,000 U.S. Savings Bond ($25,000 cash value) as well as the title of "America's Top Young Scientist of the Year." NASA will host the competition finals at the Goddard Space Flight Center, located near Washington, D.C., where students will demonstrate their science prowess in a series of team-based, interactive challenges focused on this year's theme, "The Science of Space." Meanwhile, the teachers will contend for a specially selected set of prizes and recognition as "America's Top Science Teacher of the Year."

The following top student and teacher finalists (in alphabetical order):

Student Finalists:

- Avni Bavishi from Hoffman Estates, Ill.

- Margaret Botros from Wichita, Kan.

- Shyamal Bush from Folsom, Calif.

- Megan Gleason from Tucson, Ariz.

- Michael Koehler from Allison Park, Pa.

- James Kruse from Brighton, Minn.

- Peter Ku from Princeton Junction, N.J.

- Mathew McGuthry from Richmond Hill, Ga.

- Melissa Rey from Chesterfield, Mo.

- Jack Uesugi from Wahiawa, Hawaii


Teacher Finalists:

- Edward Evans from Welch, W.Va.

- Lania Ho from Melbourne, Fla.

- Paul Kuhlman from Avon, S.D.

- Steve Latshaw from Westlake Village, Calif.

- Philip Pack from Kingston, Pa.


In its 10th year, the YSC introduced a new entry mechanism for students, challenging their ability to innovatively use everyday technology to communicate basic scientific concepts. From camcorders to cell phones, YSC competitors chose any technology available to create two-minute videos demonstrating their understanding of scientific concepts surrounding "The Science of Space" theme, including the Doppler Effect, a Parabola, Why Earth's Sky Appears Blue, Orbital Paths, Magnetic Fields, the Bernoulli Principle and the Venturi Effect. Entries were evaluated on students' ability to understand and effectively communicate the meaning of their chosen concept, not on the sophistication of their video production. The competition was open to all middle schoolers across the country.

This year, Discovery Education and 3M added a teacher component to the competition which follows the same premise as the student challenge. With the goal of finding the nation's top science teacher, the YSC empowered teachers to make their own videos explaining space-related concepts, including Newton's Laws of Motion, Acceleration, Aeronautics, Centrifugal and Centripetal Force, and Scope and Scale.


For more information on all the finalists, please visit:

Source: Discovery Education,

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