July 14, 2011

Girl Power Sweeps Through Google’s First Kids Science Fair

Top prizes at a global science fair hosted by Google went to three U.S. girls for their innovative ideas on the subjects of ovarian cancer, grilled chicken and indoor air quality, the Internet company announced on Tuesday.

According to the AFP news agency, an international panel of acclaimed scientists, including Nobel Laureates, tech visionaries and household names judged the contest, and said that "the unifying elements of all three young women were their intellectual curiosity, their tenaciousness and their ambition to use science to find solutions to big problems," according to a Google blog post.

Out of 7,500 entries from 91 different countries, the top three winners are:

  • In the 13-to-14 age group: Lauren Hodge, who "studied the effect of different marinades on the level of potentially harmful carcinogens in grilled chicken;"
  • In the 15-to-16 age group: Naomi Shah, who "endeavored to prove that making changes to indoor environments that improve indoor air quality can reduce people's reliance on asthma medications;"
  • In the 17-to-18 age group: Shree Bose for discovering "a way to improve ovarian cancer treatment for patients when they have built up a resistance to certain chemotherapy drugs."

"[The winners] examined complex problems and found both simple solutions that can be implemented by the general public"”like changing your cooking habits or removing toxins from your home"”as well as more complex solutions that can be addressed in labs by doctors and researchers, such as Shree's groundbreaking discovery, which could have wider implications for cancer research," according to the blog post.

A grand prize was also awarded, and this honor went to Shree Bose. She received a $50,000 scholarship, a trip to the Galapagos Islands with a National Geographic Explorer and also an internship at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN).

The other winners were each awarded with a $25,000 scholarship and the opportunity to intern at Google and LEGO.

"We are humbled by your ingenuity, your dedication and your skill. We are heartened to know that our future is in the capable hands of our young scientists"”young men and women who tackle big ideas to bring significant, actionable change to the world," Google says.


Image Caption: Winners (from left to right): Lauren Hodge, Shree Bose, Naomi Shah. Credit: Google


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