Google Throws What's Probably the World's Biggest Science Fair
Google is throwing a worldwide science fair, and if you're a student between 13 and 18 years old, with a computer and internet access, you can enter. From Indiana to India, Rhode Island to Russia, South Dakota to Sudan, young scientists can put their experiments on the line in the Google Global Science Fair. The grand prize winner will score a $50,000 scholarship from Google, a spot on a National Geographic expedition to the Galapagos, and some other cool stuff from LEGO and Scientific American. (I would be willing to bet that job offers at Google would probably be waiting for some of the finalists as well.)
Google's obviously looking for big ideas that are going to make a real difference in the world, calling for the "brightest young scientists from around the world to submit interesting, creative projects that are relevant to the world today." (Emphasis mine.)
To help make today’s young scientists the rock stars of tomorrow, in partnership with CERN, The LEGO Group [Note: LEGO's got their tiny plastic hands in everything these days!], National Geographic and Scientific American, we’re introducing the first global online science competition: the Google Science Fair. It’s open to students around the world who are between the ages of 13-18. All you need is access to a computer, the Internet and a web browser.
I can't wait to see what the projects look like, and if I were a teacher I would absolutely be signing up to be a preliminary judge.
It's free to enter, which will certainly help plenty of young scientists from poorer regions. Submissions must be in by April 4, 2011.
Here's a video that walks you through the submission process.
As a former science fair victor, my love for competition is personal. Much to the chagrin of our physics teacher (who recognized that measuring the aerodynamics of different golf balls and mashing up a video of our experiments with The State's infamous "Louie" skit wasn't the best science that our team could produce), my partner John Murphy and I actually won third place in our high school science fair. Our physics teacher was right, of course, and we would've gotten trounced in this Google competition.