Pranav Chhalliyil, 7th grade, earned a trip to the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair by winning Grand Champion at the Eastern Iowa Science and Engineering Fair, and third place at the State Science and Technology Fair of Iowa. Read more about his reasearch and awards.
By Pranav Chhalliyil, 7th grade:
My trip to Intel International Science and Engineering Fair was amazing and something that I will never ever forget. I felt very privileged to be one of the 3 youngest student observers at the whole Intel ISEF! Representing Iowa there were 14 people. Four of us were student observers, and the other ten were finalists.
On Sunday we had pin trading so that everyone can make friends with each other. We traded pins representing our state or country. Everyone wore their ethnic clothes to represent their country or state. Here I am with students from Dubai (left), and students from Egypt (below).
On Monday there were many symposiums and the great opening ceremony. Everyone represented their country also by wearing their ethnic clothes and they went on the stage to represent their country. I feel that Intel ISEF is the Nobel Prize for young scientists. It was really nice listening to the keynote speaker Mick Ebeling who gave us a very very inspiring talk on the "Not Impossible Labs."
On Tuesday while the finalists set up their projects in the Exhibit Hall, I went to some more symposiums which I enjoyed. After that there was a question and answer session with Nobel Laureates, Frances Arnold, J. Michael Bishop (right) , Martin Chalfie, H. Robert Horvitz, Sir Harold Kroto and John Mather. After this there was an Intel ISEF Night Party at L.A. Live, which was only for the finalists and student observers.
On Wednesday the 1,700 finalists had their judging, while we student observers went on a Field Trip to the aquarium and had a lot of fun! Then to alleviate the stress from the finalists, Intel rented Universal Studios and we enjoyed it a lot! Everything was free for us and the public wasn't allowed! (At right, with my mom.)
Thursday was fun. I volunteered, helping about 6000 children from schools from all over L.A by stamping their science passports, which had exercises and a lot of activities. That night we had special awards with about 300 cash and trip awards given by many famous companies.
Friday was the best! The final award ceremony was really nice. The first and second place winners get an asteroid named after them! A girl from Iowa named Aparna got 4th place in the biochemistry section! The Grand Prize winner, Nathan Han, won $75,000!
I feel that I learned a lot and I will continue with my science fair project and hopefully I will be able to to attend the next Intel ISEF in Pittsburg. I would like to thank Dr. Beall, Ms. Hays, Mr. Incorvina, my parents and Genetic ID for always supporting me.