2016 USA Student Finalists

Justin Bernard
Home School
Red Oak

Polli"Nation"- Helping the nation help pollinators.
Polli”Nation” was designed to educate the nation about the importance of pollinators. Allowing the public to get hands on experiences enhanced their ability to connect to the bees and take responsibility for helping pollinators. Their fears of the “pest” were eased and they were able to see the bees for the life sustaining creatures that they are.

Gabe Candee
Carlisle High School
Des Moines

Lean On Me: Service Project
The Lean On Me Service project has benefited five families through the help of seven different volunteers. The projects have helped families with power washing, raking, trimming, scraping, priming, painting and glazing.

Jordyn Daggs-Olson
South Hardin High School

Investing in Iowa's Future by Learning to Treasure Its Past
This project is an experiential curriculum designed for the third graders at Eldora-New Providence Elementary School. The program focuses on life in rural Iowa during the 1920s and 1903s, with specific foci on education, agriculture, and daily life. The students have combined classroom lessons with a day of applied experiences at the Hardin County Farm Museum.

Tiffany Foley

My Garden
In March I planted a garden. When the produce is done I plan to give it to the elderly. With my leftovers, I gave the rest of the produce to the low income families.

Emma Hoefer
Western Dubuque High School

It's All About the Words
"It's All About the Words” is a project addressing the increasing word gap between kids in poverty and those not. A collection of books and brochures will be given to Dubuque organizations to be distributed to mothers of lower income. The brochure will provide tips on how to effectively read to their children and the importance of reading.

Kyle Hoffman

Muscatine High School

Catapults for Kids and Classrooms
I raised $11,000 to fund my development of STEM curriculum/kits for Muscatine’s 12 elementary/middle-schools. Kits include high-quality ‘hands-on’ reusable activities to promote deep understanding of key concepts during traditional classes and ‘after-school’ programs. I’ve already trained teachers and arranged for ongoing “STEM Fridays” with our long-term (13 years) ‘after-school’ program! These curriculum/kits will be used for years to come. (ScienceTechnology-Engineering-Math)

Molly McCunn
North Scott High School
Long Grove

Introduction to Engineering Workshop
I held an engineering workshop on August 10th at my local library to introduce elementary school-aged children to the wonders of engineering. I reached out to a local retired aerospace engineer, who came to build water rockets with the kids. Through hands-on activities that were relatable to younger children, we explored a variety of basic engineering principles.

Erin Oppel
Muscatine High School

Middle School Matters
My project is an academic-based mentoring program for at-risk 6th grade students at Central Middle School in Muscatine. Students in the program will meet after school four days a week to work on their studies, while also being rewarded for their attendance and success in the classroom.

Manasa Pagadala
Rivermont Collegiate
Rock Island, IL

Switching to Switchgrass
Switching to Switchgrass sent free kits containing samples of the necessary materials and information to produce ethanol from renewable biomasses. Kits were sent to local governments, educational institutions, and ethanol production companies in targeted areas of India to raise awareness for a cleaner source of energy. We were also able to support the building of a second-generation ethanol plant.

Hannah Picard
Home School

Adaptive Sports Teams for Children
I organized and hosted a swimming workshop for children with physical disabilities, as well as a clinic for coaches, swim officials, and parents to learn more about adaptive and Paralympic swimming. My workshop not only allowed the participants to learn from an experienced adaptive swimming coach, but also helped raise awareness about adaptive swimming.
Emilia Porubcin
Rivermont Collegiate
Cole Valley

Pounce Magazine: Technology and the Arts in the 21st Century
Pounce is an online fine arts gallery for writers, artists, and performers to publish and share their work with other creatives. A flexible web-based medium facilitates audience growth and a print publication’s strong community while also circumventing the financial, environmental, and creative limits of print media. Our gallery encourages fine arts development from a young age.

Mickey Sloat
Davenport Central High School

Don’t Upstage Yourself
Students involved in theatre at a young age have better confidence, self-expression, and success later in life, but sometimes this is difficult for families. Don’t Upstage Yourself is an after-school enrichment program that uses theatre games, improv, and putting on a play to encourage kids to develop a love of the arts, public speaking, and, most importantly, themselves!

Lucia Wagner
Iowa City High School
Iowa City

Free Pantry
I am leading a project to create a free pantry at City High School in Iowa City. About 1700 students attend City and over 40% are on the free and reduced lunch program. Many do not have access to healthy snacks during the day. The pantry will stock nutritional foods and basic toiletry items such as toothbrushes and deodorant

Ardis White
Valley Lutheran High School