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You Be The Intel Judge

April 8, 2013 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 91, Issue 14

American Chemical Society members should be aware of the value of judging at the world’s most prestigious science fair competition: the annual Intel International Science & Engineering Fair (ISEF). Each spring, hundreds of affiliated science fairs send their best student projects to the Intel ISEF to be evaluated by expert judges. For many students, this is the first time they have the opportunity to present their work to professional scientists and engineers.

I cannot overstate the importance of this experience for students during the formative stages of their academic career. These projects display the students’ first individual attempts to do science and engineering research and to take ownership of the results of their efforts. There are many inspiring stories of students who developed breakthrough technologies, including an early detection method for pancreatic cancer that was entered last year. The projects provide a compelling reason to volunteer to be a judge and provide professional evaluation of student projects. Almost everyone who participates leaves more optimistic about the future of science and technology and the critical role they can play in helping to nurture these outstanding young investigators.

I cordially invite you to be a Grand Awards judge at the 2013 Intel ISEF, which will take place at the Phoenix Convention Center. We need more professional chemists and chemical engineers to volunteer for this rewarding activity. Judging starts the afternoon of May 14 and continues through May 15. There are 17 categories of competition, most of which involve chemistry and chemical engineering. Intel ISEF is supported by more than 70 organizations, including ACS, and is a program of the Society for Science & the Public, whose own competitions were an early experience for several Nobel Laureates and National Medal of Science recipients.

You can register to become an Intel ISEF judge at As President Barack Obama has said, “We need to teach kids it’s not just the winner of the Super Bowl who deserves to be celebrated, but the winner of the science fair.” The Intel ISEF is a wonderful opportunity for ACS members to contribute to this mission!

Bill Glaunsinger
2013 Intel ISEF Judging Chair, Arizona State University



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