I had been completely involved in my science fair project since October, and I had been researching since July. It had taken hours of research, a 2 hour river scouting trip on my birthday, hours of calculating while I had strep, and (shhh!) an all-nighter (or two). Finally, project complete and presentation rehearsed, and I was ready to compete in regionals. My trip to regionals, which included winning best in show at the school level competition and first place in Environmental Science at city wide, had captured the eyes of my teacher and my principal. When they got the email announcing the opening of the 2014 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge, they both forwarded it to me, and just like that, I had a project that I was determined to get done.
I spent two full days over spring break creating my video. I was very excited about how it turned out, but I remained cautiously optimistic about my chances. I didn’t want to “jinx” myself or get my hopes up, just to have them fall when others were selected. I tried not to think about it through May, but as soon as June came around, I couldn’t help getting excited! I started checking the website every day to see if an announcement had been made. The first thing I always said to my dad when I got home from school was “Did you hear anything from the contest?”
I don't even remember what I was doing when the phone rang. My dad picked of the phone, then passed it to me. It was then I learned that I had been chosen as a finalist. One thing I do remember is pulling the phone away from my face and letting out a huge scream, which I hope I was able to suppress and keep silent! From then on, it came up in every conversation. After the official announcement in July, my parents had a competition to see who could get the most likes on their Facebook post. Emails poured in from relatives congratulating me. I started getting emails from teachers and friends of my parents. I couldn’t be more excited!
I know I have a lot of work in front of me, and a lot of responsibility. But no matter what happens, I know competing is going to be an awesome experience, and I can't wait to get started!