Students from across the United States are in Washington, D.C., this week where they will be recognized as national winners in the 26th annual ExploraVision program, the world’s largest K-12 science competition.
The winners include a team of young scientists from St. Anthony’s High School.
ExploraVision is sponsored by Toshiba and administered by the National Science Teachers Association. The ExploraVision competition challenges students to use scientific research to invent technologies that will solve the problems of the future.
On Thursday, the eight winning teams will exhibit their winning projects at a STEM Education Science Fair and Senate Panel discussion in Capitol Hill. There, they will meet with members of Congress and their staff. On Friday, the teams will formally present their projects during the ExploraVision Science Showcase and Awards Luncheon at the National Press Club.
Also in attendance will be special guests from Toshiba and NSTA.
The St. Anthony’s team, which won first place in the grade 7-9 category, did its work in emotion recognition: the personalized future of autism therapy. They described their project this way: “Individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) have deficits in emotion recognition abilities. This leads to uncomfortable social situations, anxiety, depression, and even suicide. We propose a new approach to personalized, always-on therapy for kids and teenagers with ASD based on novel wearable, smart electronic devices. EMREC will improve the lives of individuals with ASD by providing personalized and engaging therapy, and by revealing new patterns of emotion recognition deficiencies.”
The students will present to members of the press, their peers, parents, educators, NSTA board and council members and leaders in education policy, including Bill Nye the Science Guy; Dr. Christine Anne Royce, president of NSTA; Dr. David L. Evans, executive director of NSTA; Noriaki Hashimoto, chairman and CEO, Toshiba America, Inc; Leland Melvin, former NASA astronaut and NFL football player; and Roshni Bhimani, a winner of the competition from 1993.
More Than Just a Science Competition
Nearly 5,000 team projects entered the Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision competition this year, comprised of close to 15,000 students from across the United States. This year’s winning projects ranged from a wearable device that delivers personalized, always-on therapy to individuals with autism spectrum disorders to a device that helps farmers remotely monitor their crops.