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3M Young Scientist Challenge Announces 2023 National Finalists

3M (@3M) and Discovery Education (@DiscoveryEd) today announced the 2023 3M Young Scientist Challenge (#YoungScientist) top 10 finalists. As the nation’s premier middle school science competition, the annual 3M Young Scientist Challenge invites students in grades 5-8 to compete for an exclusive mentorship with a 3M scientist, a $25,000 grand prize, and the chance to earn the title of “America’s Top Young Scientist.”

This year’s finalists – fourteen students ranging in age from 11-14 – identified an everyday problem in their community or the world and submitted a one- to two-minute video communicating the science behind their solution. An esteemed and diverse group of judges, including 3M scientists and leaders in education from across the country, evaluated entries based on creativity, scientific knowledge, and communication effectiveness. The competition event will take place from October 9-10, 2023, at the 3M Innovation Center in Minneapolis.  

“For 16 years, the 3M Young Scientist Challenge has exemplified our belief in harnessing the power of people, ideas, and science to reimagine what’s possible. The remarkable young innovators of this competition share our determination to help shape a brighter future.” said John Banovetz, 3M executive vice president, chief technology officer and environmental responsibility. “By asking students to think creatively and apply the power of science to everyday problems, incredible solutions and leaders arise.” 

The top 10 2023 3M Young Scientist Challenge finalists include students from public and private schools across the U.S. Each finalist will be evaluated on a series of challenges, including a presentation of their completed innovation. Each challenge will be scored independently by a panel of judges. The grand prize winner will receive $25,000, a unique destination trip, and the title of America’s Top Young Scientist. 

The top 10 2023 3M Young Scientist Challenge finalists are as follows in alphabetical order by last name: 

  • Heman Bekele, Annandale, Va., Frost Middle School, Fairfax County Public Schools 
  • Anisha Dhoot, Portland, Ore., Stoller Middle School, Beaverton School District 48J 
  • Ishaan Iyer, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., Perdew Elementary, Etiwanda School District 
  • Sean Jiang, Baltimore, Md., Gilman School, Private  
  • Shripriya Kalbhavi, San Jose, Calif., Joaquin Miller Middle School, Cupertino Union School District 
  • Annie Katz, New Rochelle, N.Y., Leffell School, Private 
  • Anish Kosaraju, Saratoga, Calif., The Harker School, Campbell Union High School District 
  • Adhip Maitra, Oviedo, Fla., Jackson Heights Middle School, Seminole County School District 
  • Shruti Sivaraman, Austin, Texas, Canyon Vista Middle School, Round Rock Independent School District 
  • Sarah Wang, Andover, Mass., The Pike School, Independent 

To learn more about the 3M Young Scientist Challenge and meet the 2023 finalists, visit YoungScientistLab.com. 

“What a delight it is to see these incredible young innovators recognized for their hard work. The 2023 finalists showcase the power of innovation with projects spanning an array of fascinating scientific topics like artificial intelligence and cybersecurity. We cannot wait to see your ideas come to life!” said Amy Nakamoto, general manager of social impact at Discovery Education.  

America’s Top Young Scientists have gone on to give TED Talks, file patents, found nonprofits, make the Forbes 30 Under 30 list, ring the bell at the New York Stock Exchange and exhibit at the White House Science Fair. These young innovators have also been named Time Magazine’s first Kid of the Year, featured in The New York Times Magazine, Forbes, and Business Insider, and have appeared on national television programs such as Good Morning America, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and more. In addition, the 3M Young Scientist Challenge Alumni Network began fall 2022 and welcomed more than 100 former challenge finalists and winners for networking and grant opportunities. 

The award-winning 3M Young Scientist Challenge supplements the 3M and Discovery Education program – Young Scientist Lab – which provides no-cost dynamic digital resources for students, teachers, and families to explore, transform, and innovate the world around them. All the resources are also available through the Young Scientist Lab Channel and in the Social Impact Partnerships channel on Discovery Education’s recently enhanced K-12 learning platform  

For more information about Discovery Education’s digital resources and professional learning services, visit www.discoveryeducation.com, and stay connected with Discovery Education on social media through Twitter and LinkedIn. 

The American Consortium for Equity in Education, publisher of the "Equity & Access" journal, celebrates and connects the educators, associations, community partners and industry leaders who are working to solve problems and create a more equitable environment for historically underserved pre K-12 students throughout the United States.

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