Discovery Education and 3M have named 13-year-old Maanasa Mendu from Mason, OH the winner of the 2016 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge. Mendu created HARVEST, a bio-inspired energy device that uses solar and wind power to create energy. This innovation was inspired by a visit to India where she discovered many people lacking basic life necessities such as clean water and lighting.
Mendu, a ninth grader at William Mason High School in Mason City School District, competed alongside nine other finalists today during a live competition at the 3M Innovation Center in St. Paul, Minn. She was awarded the title of “America’s Top Young Scientist” as well as a $25,000 prize.
The second, third and fourth place winners each received a $1,000 prize and a trip to a taping of a show on Discovery’s family of networks. These extraordinary students are:
- Rohan Wagh from Portland, OR, a ninth grader at Sunset High School in Beaverton School District, received second place for his innovation that utilizes the natural metabolism of bacteria to create energy.
- Kaien Yang from Chantilly, VA, an eighth grader at Nysmith School for the Gifted, received third place for his innovation that uses pumpkin seed oil to create both a biodiesel and bioplastic that reduces emissions and pollution from plastic.
- Amelia Day from Sumner, WA, a ninth grader at Sumner High School in Sumner School District, received fourth place for her invention that uses sensory feedback to help rebuild neural connections inside of the brain during rehabilitation.
- The fifth through tenth place winners each received a $1,000 prize and a $500 Excitations gift card. These finalists, in alphabetical order, are:
- Meghna Behari from Swickley, PA, an eighth grader at Marshall Middle School (North Allegheny School District)
- Mrinali Kesavadas from Mahomet, IL, a ninth grader at Mahomet-Seymour High School(Mahomet-Seymour School District)
- Rohit Mital from Rochester Hills, MI, a ninth grader at Adams High School (Rochester Community Schools)
- Sara Makboul from Acworth, GA, a ninth grader at Kennesaw Mountain High School (Cobb County School District)
- Sofia Tomov from Knoxville, TN, an eighth grader who is homeschooled
- Will Paschal from Madison, GA, a ninth grader at Morgan County High School (Morgan County School District)
For more information on the 2016 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge and to learn more about this year’s finalists, go to www.YoungScientistChallenge.com.