Last updateThu, 11 Aug 2022 8am

3M Young Scientist Challenge Announces 2022 National Finalists and Honorable Mentions

Today's youth has never been more hopeful for a better, brighter, and safer world. Inspired by the desire to impact change in communities far and near, they are using the power of STEM to help drive the change they want to see. 3M (@3M) and Discovery Education (@DiscoveryEd) are proud to announce the top 10 finalists and four honorable mention recipients in the 2022 3M Young Scientist Challenge, the 15th year of the competition.

The ten 3M Young Scientist Challenge finalists will work throughout the summer on an innovation of their choosing that aims to solve a global challenge. Each finalist is paired with a 3M mentor, a real scientist from 3M, to help guide and inspire over a period of about 4 months. (Photo credit: 3M and Discovery Education).

"We are thrilled to welcome the latest finalists, and we are energized by a future that embraces STEM-for-all."
This year's finalists and honorable mention recipients feature outstanding innovations from young scientists – fourteen students ages 12 to 14 – who submitted a one-to two-minute video communicating a solution to an everyday problem in their community or the world and the science behind their solution. A 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 final event will take place on October 17-18, 2022, at the 3M Innovation Center in Minneapolis.

"At 3M, we are committed to unlocking the power of our people, science, and ideas to reimagine what comes next. The '3M Young Scientist Challenge' supports young innovators who have demonstrated that same passion through creative discovery and the desire to improve the world around us," said Karina Chavez, senior vice president and chief strategy officer at 3M. "We are thrilled to welcome the latest generation of finalists and honorable mention recipients, and we are energized by a future that embraces STEM-for-all to build a better tomorrow."

The top 10 2022 3M Young Scientist Challenge finalists and the four honorable mention recipients 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 2022 3M Young Scientist Challenge finalists are as follows in alphabetical order by last name:

Leanne Fan, San Diego, Calif., Mesa Verde Middle School, Poway Unified School District
John Lee, Oviedo, Fla., Jackson Heights Middle School, Seminole County Public School District
Samaira Mehta, Santa Clara, Calif., Sunnyvale Raynor Middle School, Stratford School
Sritej Padmanabhan, Sewickley, Pa., Marshall Middle School, North Allegheny School District
Amritha Praveen, Buffalo Grove, Ill., Aptakisic Junior High School, Aptakisic – Tripp School District 102
Shanza Sami, Iowa City, Iowa, Northwest Junior High School, Iowa City Community School District
Sahasra Swargam, Portland, Ore., Stoller Middle School, Beaverton School District
Asvini Thivakaran, Round Rock, Texas, Cedar Valley Middle School, Round Rock Independent School District
Daniel Thomas, Colleyville, Texas, Colleyville Middle School, Grapevine-Colleyville Independent School District
Harini Venkatesh, Plano, Texas, C M Rice Middle School, Plano Independent School District
The 3M Young Scientist Challenge also recognizes four entrants with an Honorable Mention Award. These projects were selected due to their unique and innovative concepts and effective communication by the recipient. The four 2022 3M Young Scientist Challenge honorable mention recipients are as follows in alphabetical order by last name:

Austin Ewing, Chicago, Ill., Gwendolyn Brooks College Preparatory Academy, Chicago Public Schools
Isha Joshi, Vienna, Va., Kilmer Middle School, Fairfax County Public Schools
Pratyush Sathish Kumar, Avon, Ind., Avon Intermediate School East, Avon Community School Corporation
Delisha Manuel, Milpitas, Calif., Stratford School
"Congratulations to each of the finalists and honorable mentions in the 2022 3M Young Scientist Challenge! Your leadership and STEM ingenuity are what the 3M Young Scientist Challenge is all about," said Amy Nakamoto, general manager of social impact at Discovery Education. "For 15 years, Discovery Education and 3M have been working together to support and amplify young scientists to help change the world through innovation and creativity. With 3M's continued and thoughtful leadership in STEM, together we are helping to inspire and empower the students of today to become the STEM leaders of tomorrow."

In its fifteenth year, the 3M Young Scientist Challenge continues to inspire and challenge middle school students to think creatively and apply the power of STEM to discovering real-world solutions. 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, CNN's Cuomo Prime Time, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and more.

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. Additional digital resources, content, and professional resources are available through 3M's Science at Home series, an array of videos showcasing 3M scientists and guests performing simple, at home experiments for kids aged 6-12.



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