State Science and Technology Fair of Iowa Announces 2022 Winners

Innovative youth across Iowa earn thousands of dollars in prizes, awards and scholarships

April 1, 2022, 10:39 am | Valyn Bodensteiner, Alexa Groff

Amara Orth, Senior High Grand Champion.AMES, Iowa – During the State Science and Technology Fair of Iowa, 398 junior and senior high-school students from across the state competed for prizes, awards and scholarships valued at over $75,000.

Students exhibiting over 300 projects from more than 50 schools competed during the fair March 24-25. Winners are now listed on the SSTFI website’s awards page.

The largest STEM competition for youth in grades 6-12 addresses the Next Generation Science Standards’ call for students to create scientific research using the practices of science and engineering. The Next Generation Science Standards include critical thinking and communication skills, which are important for postsecondary success, according to the National Research Council.

“We are extremely proud of the students who participated and the scientific research that was conducted,” said Alexa Groff, Iowa 4-H STEM coordinator and director of SSTFI. “We had 12 new schools participate this year and are excited to see the fair continue to grow in years to come.”

In celebration of the 65th year, more than 40 new scholarships were awarded, including scholarships from each of the regent Iowa schools. The top overall winners will attend the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Atlanta, Georgia, and others will display their projects at the National FFA Convention and Expo in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Top scholarships and awards for senior high were granted, including the following.

Grand Honorable Mention: Claire Gu of West Des Moines Valley High School for her project titled, “Forecasting Beach Safety in Iowa’s Recreational Lakes Using Machine Learning Models.”

Reserve Champion: Lilly Graham of Iowa City West High School for her project titled, “A Looming Epidemic: Personal Music Player Use in a Young Adult Sample and Its Implications for Future Noise-Induced Hearing Loss.”  

Champion: Ishita Mukadam of Maharishi Schools for her project titled, “Turmeric Bandage: A Natural and Sustainable Way for Faster Wound Healing.”

Grand Champion: Amara Orth of Lewis Central High School for her project titled, “Secret Sounds of Bees: Analysis of Honey Bee Vibroacoustics using Hidden Markov Models.”  

Iowa Space Grant Consortium Scholarship: Stren Crouch of Algona High School for his project titled, “Moon Mining.”

6 Year Dedication to Science Award

  • Jack Blint – Holy Trinity.
  • Jacob Hohl – Central Lee.
  • Kenzi Carrigan – Algona.
  • Laura Mehmert – Holy Trinity.
  • Olivia Frankl – Algona.
  • Paisley Grafton – Central Lee.
  • Stren Crouch – Algona.

Claison Clay Groff Traveling Memorial Trophy

  • Senior High: Beckman Catholic.
  • Junior High: Central Lee.

For more information on the SSTFI, please visit https://sstfi.org/ or contact your Iowa State University Extension and Outreach county office.

Shareable photos and captions

  • Senior High Grand Champion: Amara Orth of Lewis Central High School.
  • Senior High Champion: Ishita Mukadam of Maharishi Schools.
  • Senior High Reserve Champion: Lilly Graham of Iowa City West High School.
  • Senior High Grand Honorable Mention: Claire Gu of West Des Moines Valley High School.
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