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Posted by on Jan 19, 2011 in Computing, Current Events, Featured, Technology | 0 comments

Google Science Fair 2011 Offering BIG Prizes for Junior Scientists

imageIntroducing the world’s first online global science competition, the Google Science Fair!

Google has partnered with CERN, LEGO, National Geographic and Scientific American to create a new kind of online science competition that is more global, open and inclusive than ever before. Students aged 13 – 18 from around the world are invited to enter and compete for awesome once-in-a-lifetime experiences, scholarships and real-life work opportunities. Sign up today at http://google.com/sciencefair.

So says the short blurb attached to the promo video for the 2011 Google Science Fair. Made in the style of a Rube Goldberg machine, the video clip is well worth a look:

(Follow the link above to the extended version of the video.)

We love the support the Google gives to these sort of initiatives, especially when they are focused on education, youth and development. And as the competition is open to students aged 13 to 18 from around the world working on their own or in a team of two or three. This time around Google is looking for the brightest young scientists from around the world to submit interesting, creative projects that are relevant to the world today.

Win a $50,000 Bursary & Much More

What do our young scientists stand to win? An array of prizes including once-in-a-lifetime experiences (like a trip to the Galapagos Islands with a National Geographic Explorer), scholarships and real-life work opportunities (like a five-day trip to CERN in Switzerland).

The Grand Prize is the following:

  • A National Geographic Expedition: The Grand Prize winner(s) plus one parent or guardian per winner will win an amazing 10 day trip to the Galapagos Islands with National Geographic Expeditions. Traveling aboard the National Geographic Endeavour the winner(s) will visit Darwin’s living laboratory and experience up-close encounters with unique species such as flightless cormorants, marine iguanas, and domed giant tortoises.
  • A Scholarship from Google: A $50,000 scholarship, split equally between team members should a team win this prize. This scholarship is intended to be used towards the finalists’ further education.
  • A Once in a Lifetime Experience: The Grand Prize winner will have first choice of an experience at one of the following partner organizations: CERN, Google, the LEGO Group, or Scientific American.
  • A Personalised LEGO Prize: A personal LEGO color mosaic (one for each team member, to build her/himself) and 1 personal, exclusive LEGO box – specially made for the occasion.
  • A package from Scientific American: Digital Access to Scientific American Archives for the finalists’ schools for a year.
  • There are also additional prizes for Age Group winners and finalists. (See the full list of prizes here.)

So How Do We Enter?

All you need is access to a computer, the Internet and a web browser. To enter, register online and create your project as a Google Site. Registration is open until 04 April 2011. Note that entrants must get parental or guardian consent in order to compete. (You can check out the complete rules here.)

Here’s the Official “How to enter the Google Science Fair” video:

Calling all Junior Scientists!

What Happens After We’ve Submitted Our Entry?

After 04 April Google will begin judging and will announce semi-finalists in early May. The semi-finalist projects will be posted on an online gallery, where the public will be asked to vote for a “People’s Choice” winner. From the list of semi-finalists, 15 finalists will be chosen to take their projects to Google headquarters in the USA in July to compete in the final, live event, where world-renowned science judges will select a winner in each age category, as well as a grand-prize winner.

We here at The BlaBla Blog are big on education and would love to see a South African entry or two being submitted. I urge you to please share this article with your Facebook Friends and Twitter Followers, to spread the news to your local schools and science clubs, and to actively encourage as many scholars and budding young scientists as you can to enter this Science Fair. We need a generation of home-grown scientists to lead future development in our country, and exposure to this sort of event can only benefit.

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