Port Orange, FL – A Port Orange student was named a top-30 finalist in the 7th annual Broadcom MASTERS, the nation’s most prestigious middle school STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) competition, based on his research on using solar-powered Tesla coils to purify water.
Scott Tobin, former Creekside Middle student and current freshman at Spruce Creek High, will travel to Washington D.C. to participate in the Broadcom MASTERS next month where he will compete for numerous awards, including a top prize of $25,000. The competition is founded and produced by the Society for Science & the Public.
Tobin was chosen by a panel of distinguished scientists and engineers out of record-breaking 2,499 applicants in 37 states, Puerto Rico, and the Department of Defense overseas. He was in the top 10% of middle school competitors who participated at Society-affiliated regional and state science fairs, which includes the Tomoka Regional Science and Engineering Fair. He won first place in Environmental Engineering at the Tomoka Regional Science and Engineering Fair in January.
“The Tomoka Regional Science and Engineering Fair celebrated its 50th year of being the area’s oldest STEM competition,” Jeremy Blinn, secondary science specialist for Volusia County Schools says. “Now, we celebrate with Scott, his parents, and his teachers for this amazing accomplishment of being selected as a Broadcom MASTERS Finalist.”
Tobin’s project, titled By Using A Solar-Powered Tesla Coil Can Water Be Made Potable Through Ozonification, came about because he wanted to find a new way to make water safe to drink. He found that nearly one billion people worldwide lack access to clean water, and he thought a Tesla coil may be able to help solve the problem and turn that water into clean drinking water.
According to Volusia County Schools, as a finalist, Tobin gets a $500 cash award and an all-expense paid trip to D.C. for the competition, where he will compete for the following awards:
- $25,000 Samueli Foundation Prize, a gift of Susan and Henry Samueli, Co-Founder of Broadcom Corporation, for the student who demonstrates mastery of all STEM fields, and exemplifies how research, innovation and teamwork come together to impact our everyday lives.
- $20,000 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for Health Advancement, recognizing the student whose work and performance shows the most promise in health-related fields.
- $10,000 Marconi/Samueli Award for Innovation, awarded to a student who demonstrates prowess in electrical engineering.
- $7,500 Lemelson Award for Invention, awarded by The Lemelson Foundation to a young inventor creating promising solutions to real-world problems.
- First and Second Place Awards issued in each category of STEM will receive $3,500 or $2,500, respectively, to use toward a STEM summer camp experience, plus an iPad.
Winners will be announced October 24 after finalists complete a rigorous competition that tests their abilities in STEM, critical thinking, communication, creativity and collaboration.
Broadcom MASTERS will recognize Tobin’s Creekside Middle science teacher, Marty Ingoldsby, with a one-year classroom subscription to Science News magazine, and Creekside Middle was already awarded $1,000 to use toward STEM activities.
Below are some quick facts about the 2017 Broadcom MASTERS competition, courtesy Volusia County Schools:
- Finalists include 15 female and 15 male students, representing 30 schools across 17 states.
- California has 10 finalists, Pennsylvania has three, and New York and Florida each have two. The other states, who are represented by one finalist each, include Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Louisiana, Montana, North Carolina, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, Utah, Virginia and Washington.
- Finalist projects cover multiple disciplines of science, including environmental and earth science, medicine and health science, electrical and mechanical engineering, microbiology, biochemistry, bioengineering, computer science, software engineering, behavioral and social sciences, energy and sustainability, animal science, chemistry, and plant science.
- For a full listing of the 2017 finalists and project descriptions visit: https://student.societyforscience.org/broadcom-masters-2017-finalists.
NOTE: In featured photo, Scott Tobin (right) accepts his first-place award in Environmental Engineering from Jeremy Blinn (left), secondary science specialist, at the Tomoka Regional Science and Engineering Fair in January.
Photo Courtesy Volusia County Schools
Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2017.