After I heard from Discovery Education that I had been selected as a finalist, I began thinking about ideas for the final project. Fortunately, I was going to Singapore and Hong Kong, so this would be a perfect time to make observations and come up with an idea!
In Singapore and Hong Kong, each culture's respective differences astounded me. For instance, in Hong Kong, skyscrapers were prevalent and due to the high population, pollution was also prevalent. On the other hand, Singapore was a cleaner, less congested city where pollution was not as problematic. Singapore and Hong Kong's unique characteristics allowed me to make good obervations for a potential idea.
When I returned back home, I reviewed my observations and notes to come up with problems. Once I had come up with a list of ideas, it was time to move on to the difficult part: narrowing the list down to only three problems. In order to do this, I chose the three problems that I was most passionate about researching. I shared my choices with my mentor and eventually ended up choosing atmospheric pollution.
As I was going through this process, I thought about why 3M scientists are motivated to solve problems in their daily lives. I concluded that these scientists are on a quest to make the world a better place to live, and they are motivated by the potential a better world holds. I realized that these concepts are the same factors that motivate me to solve problems. With this in mind, I have begun research on my project, thinking about the potential benefits that my project may hold for the world.