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Posted: September 10, 2008
Science and technology competition ExploraVision 2009 now open for student entrants
(Nanowerk News) The Toshiba/National Science Teachers Association ExploraVision Awards Program, one of the world’s largest K –12 science and technology competitions, is now accepting entries for its 2009 competition. For the past 16 years, the ExploraVision program has provided an opportunity for students to envision a better future and has given educators a valuable tool for helping motivate their students to excel in science.
As an increasing number of state and federal policymakers and educators recognize the importance of “STEM,” or science, technology, engineering, and math education, as a way to ensure a vibrant future economy in a world that will require more technically sophisticated skills, ExploraVision stands out as one of the nation’s leading education programs that promotes student interest in science and technological innovation. The program has, in fact, become so popular as a learning and motivational tool that many teachers use it as part of their science and technology curriculum. The deadline for the 2009 competition is January 28, 2009.
Mr. Masa Fukakushi, Chairman & CEO of Toshiba America, Inc., noted: “In this election year, education is naturally one of the foremost issues on many people’s minds—and something practically everyone agrees upon, regardless of party affiliation, is the vital importance of STEM education. Toshiba’s partner in ExploraVision, the National Science Teachers Association, has been a longtime advocate and active proponent of STEM education, and indeed the ExploraVision program was carefully crafted to motivate and inspire students in these core subjects. In the seventeen years that Toshiba has been sponsoring ExploraVision, we have been delighted time and time again to hear from past participants who have gone on to careers in science and technology, and we are deeply gratified to be part of such a valuable educational program. As a company that has been committed to technological innovation for over 130 years, the ExploraVision program is not only a great reflection of who and what we are as a company, but it is a way for us to encourage young people to learn and discover the many wonders of science and technology for themselves.”
“The Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision Awards program gives students the opportunity to do what scientists do every day—use real science to solve real problems—and it shows them how exciting and rewarding it can be in the process,” said Dr. Francis Eberle, Executive Director of NSTA. “Last year’s winning teams proposed future technologies that could help solve some of the world’s most pressing energy and environmental pollution problems. We are delighted that this partnership between Toshiba and NSTA has generated so much student interest in science and technological innovation and has really motivated many students to pursue a career in the STEM fields.”
Envisioning a Better Future…
In ExploraVision, students envision amazing advancements in science and technology that could make the future a better place. In the 2008 competition, for instance, winning teams proposed future technologies that ranged from renewable alternatives to petroleum-based plastics to a device that could remove carbon dioxide from car exhaust. A “Wavemaster” that would harness the power of the ocean for clean renewable energy was also created in response to the ExploraVision challenge. For their projects, student teams in 2008 researched existing technologies to conceptualize future advancements in the fields of nanotechnology, bio-plastics, genetic engineering, GPS satellite systems and more. Up to $240,000 in savings bonds will be awarded this year to student winners whose innovative ideas combine imagination with the tools of science. Toshiba laptop computers for schools and other prizes for students, teachers, and mentors will also be presented.
About the ExploraVision Program…
The ExploraVision program, sponsored by Toshiba and administered by the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), challenges students to research scientific principles and current technologies as the basis for designing innovative technologies that could exist in 20 years. Students work in teams of two to four, and since the program’s inception, more than 246,000 students have submitted entries. This year’s top winners were selected from a group of 4,527 team entries, representing the participation of 14,042 students from the United States and Canada.
Students on the four first-place ExploraVision winning teams will each receive a $10,000 U.S. Series EE Savings Bond. Students on second-place teams will each receive a $5,000 bond. (Canadian winners receive Canada bonds purchased for the equivalent issue price in Canadian dollars.) The eight teams will also receive an all-expenses-paid trip with their families, mentor, and coach to Washington, DC for a gala awards weekend in June 2009. Activities will include a visit to Capitol Hill to meet with members of Congress, a Science Showcase during which the students will display and demonstrate their winning ideas, and sightseeing. The highlight of ExploraVision weekend will be a gala awards banquet and ceremony where students will be formally recognized for their creativity and accomplishments.
For more information or an application for 2009, visit www.exploravision.org or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.