Funding, Grants & Awards

3M, Discovery Ed Open Young Scientist Challenge

Discovery Education and 3M have launched the 17th annual Young Scientist Challenge, with an opportunity to work with a 3M scientist and a $25,000 grand prize up for grabs.

The challenge asks students in grades 5-8 to imagine a solution to an everyday problem, then create a one- to two-minute-long video explaining the science behind their idea.

"Video entries will be evaluated based on their creativity, scientific knowledge, persuasiveness and overall presentation," according to a news release. "Ten finalists will then be chosen to participate in an exclusive mentorship program where they will work closely with a 3M scientist. During the program, finalists will be challenged to develop an innovation that positively impacts them, their family, their community or the global population. The students will meet virtually with their mentors and will receive additional resources and support from 3M and Discovery Education. Each finalist will also receive a trip to the 3M Innovation Center in St. Paul, MN, to compete at the final event in October 2015."

Entries, due on or before April 21, will not be judged on production values.

"Participating in the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge and working alongside my incredible, supportive 3M Scientist Mentor has opened up opportunities that I never had before and has also taught me valuable lessons about using technology and innovation to make a difference in the world," said Sahil Doshi, who won last year's contest with a battery cell invention, in a prepared statement.

"This one-of-a-kind program and partnership between Discovery Education and 3M has inspired thousands of students across the country, giving them the valuable opportunity to hone the critical skills they need for college and career success," said Godfrey Rangasammy, preK-12 science curriculum supervisor at Prince George's County Public Schools in Maryland, in a news release. "The Young Scientist Challenge not only encourages our next generation to solve the challenges of tomorrow, but this competition also highlights the incredible possibilities for today's young minds to develop breakthrough creations that will change the future and revolutionize the way we live our lives every day."

For complete rules, submission guidelines and tips from past winners, visit

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at

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