Discovery Education Heads to the White House Science Fair

DE3MYSC 2011 Winner Presentation
Benedict with 3M CEO George Buckley, Discovery Communications' Bill Goodwyn and Reed Timmer

On February 7, the White House will celebrate budding scientists with the second White House Science Fair, welcoming student winners representing science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competitions across the U.S. Among the approximately 100 young scientists participating on Tuesday you’ll find student winners from the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge and the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge.

Both competitions honor the next generation of scientific leaders, as Discovery Education partners with leading organizations like 3M, Siemens & NSTA. Braeden Benedict, winner of the 2011 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge, is a 15-year-old, 9th grade student from Rancho Palos Verdes, California who developed a low-cost impact detection device for use on youth and high school contact sport helmets to warn coaches and trainers that a player has received a hit with enough force to cause a concussion.

Also joining Braeden will be Team “6000 n 60” from Kohala Middle School in Kapaau, Hawaii, and winners of the 2011 Middle School Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge. For the Challenge, the team focused on the disposal of household batteries in the absence of a local opportunity to recycle them and developed “6000 n 60,” a household battery recycling effort to collect 6,000 batteries in 60 days. After collection, the students used the data to lobby for better battery recycling opportunities.

Several of the students invited to the White House will have the opportunity to exhibit their work at the Fair, at which the President will address students, science educators and business leaders about the importance of STEM education to the U.S. economy. And we’ll be keeping you updated on the Fair — from the set up tomorrow to the event on Tuesday from @DiscoveryComm on Twitter (make sure to follow #WHScienceFair, too).

As the President when he hosted the first White House Science Fair, “If you win the NCAA championship, you come to the White House. Well, if you’re a young person and you produce the best experiment or design, the best hardware or software, you ought to be recognized for that achievement, too.” Hear, hear!