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Copywrite 2001-2004, California Science Center
Media Contact: Shell Amegah or Paula Wagner
Media Contact: 213.744-7446
Pager: 323-525-4529
Public Contact: 213-744-7530
May 2 , 2001
Potential Future Scientists Compete
For Prestigious Honors at the 50th California State Science Fair
Former Astronaut Buzz Aldrin Set to Give Science Fair Award Ceremony Keynote Address
Los Angeles - In light of the diminishing test figures of California students in science and math, the 50th California State Science Fair is a rising sun on the science & technology horizon. The Science Fair features over 900 middle and senior high school students who have won their regional and county fairs statewide.
Former Astronaut Buzz Aldrin gives
keynote address at the 50th California
State Science Fair at 5 p.m. May 21st
The final round of competition takes place at the 50th California State Science Fair, May 22, 2001 at the California Science Center (with a number of overflow projects located at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County). Winners take home an unprecedented combined total of $40,000 in award money raised jointly by THE MUSES, Rotary Club of Los Angeles, Science Fair co-sponsors and organizers.
Students try out their wings as real scientists, following scientific methodology for the duration of the project. In their quest to win the judges' attention, students learn marketing skills, often drumming up imaginative displays for their projects, complete with lights, moving parts, colorful designs and music. They also learn verbal presentation skills and poise under pressure as they present their findings during interviews with Science Fair judges.
Students compete in 18 subject-based categories from Applied Mechanics, Behavioral Sciences, and Biochemistry to Earth Sciences and Aerodynamics and Electronics. Some colorful past examples of projects include:
  • Newspapers as Mulch
  • Effect of Dimples on Golf Ball Flight
  • How Long Does it Take to Cook a Hot Dog?
  • Best Plywood for Homemade Skateboards
  • Hot Fish, Cold Fish: Respiration in Goldfish
The projects will be on public display from 1-5 p.m. on May 21st. Admission is free to view the projects and hear the keynote address by former astronaut Buzz Aldrin.
The Science Fair has maintained its attraction and popularity for half a century. Students from around the state must first qualify at the county level before advancing to the State Science Fair. Their projects will be judged by a volunteer pool of over 350 scientists and engineers from private industry and higher education.
In addition to the winners in each category, top honors will go to Student of the Year (senior only), and Project of the Year (in both junior and senior high divisions). Science teachers, nominated by middle and senior high school students, will also compete for Science Teacher of the Year. The selection is determined by a panel representing the California Science Center, the California State Science Teachers THE MUSES, the Rotary Club of Los Angeles and educators.
The public is invited to hear Buzz Aldrin give the keynote address on Monday, May 21st at 5 p.m. at the Science Center. Aldrin is recognized for the historic Apollo XI moon walk achieved on July 20, 1969, with fellow astronaut Neil Armstrong, thus becoming the first two humans to set foot on another world.
The fair culminates with an awards ceremony that takes place Tuesday, May 22nd at 5 p.m. in the Science Fair tent on the grounds of the Science Center. The California Science Center is located at 700 State Drive in Exposition Park. Parking is $5 per car.
Editor/Producer Note:
Media Preview:
  • What: Members of the media are invited to a photo/interview opportunity with over 900 middle and senior high school students, from schools throughout the state, on-hand to present their science projects for category recognition, as well as $40,000 in cash awards.
  • When: Tuesday, May 22, 2001
    9:00 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. - as student projects are being judged
  • Who: Ben Tunnell, Chairman of the California State Science Fair Board
    Buzz Aldrin, former astronaut
    David J. Combs, Ph.D., Deputy Director of Education, California Science Center
    900 middle and senior high school finalists
  • Where: California Science Center in Exposition Park.
For more information on the California State Science Fair, please visit www.casciencectr.org/CSSF. The names of the award winners will be posted on the site May 22 after 8 p.m. Reporters may also contact the communications Department at (213) 744-7446 for information on winners from their area beginning May 23.
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