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A virtual gathering: Celebrating 10 years of the Broadcom MASTERS

By Gayle Kansagor

The Society and Broadcom Foundation celebrated a decade of Broadcom MASTERS this year with two very special virtual events that brought together competitors spanning its 10-year history, plus 2021’s 11th class, to connect and network with one another. With more than 160 competition alumni in attendance, the Broadcom MASTERS community was able to come together to share memories and celebrate this important milestone.

The festivities kicked off in the Society’s virtual world, Virbela’s Event Farm, where Maya Ajmera, President and CEO of the Society for Science and Publisher of Science News shared, “The graduates of the Broadcom MASTERS competition are proof that this is an extraordinary program. I’m continuously impressed by all the accomplishments of our alumni, whether they are starting college, working towards a doctoral degree or launching a company.” Paula Golden, President of Broadcom Foundation, commended the alumni on their courage, sharing that her hope is that they took with them – from the Broadcom MASTERS – the bravery to try new things, experience failure and take risks.

As part of the virtual world, alumni created avatars, interacted with one another and listened to accomplished speakers, including Lauren Ejiaga (BCM 2018-2019), Kyle Tianshi (BCM 2019-2020), Avery Clowes (BCM 2015), Teevyah Yuva Raju (BCM 2013), Katherine Landoni (BCM 2011), Joshua Wentzel (BCM 2013), Abril Hunter (BCM 2013), Regan Williams (BCM 2017-2018), Kushal Kadakia (BCM 2011), Alaina Gassler (BCM 2019), Zuriel Erikson Joven (BCM 2017) and Faris Wald (BCM 2017). 

The speakers touched on issues ranging from succeeding in high school and college to scientific topics covering sustainability and determinants in health. During the discussions, they provided advice and “talked shop” about their fields.  

During the second event, which was only for former finalists, alumni were joined by the 2021 finalists for a virtual Zoom event. The evening featured Paula, Maya, and Henry Samueli, Chairman of the Board, Broadcom Inc., and Chair of the Broadcom Foundation, who celebrated the alumni and shared their pride in their current successes. Alumni also received a special message from National Leadership Council Member, Rajen Sheth.

In true Broadcom MASTERS fashion, alumni were split into teams (according to the team color they were assigned during the competition) and participated in a challenge testing their knowledge of Broadcom MASTERS trivia. (Congratulations to the black team who won!) Beyond the challenge, the 2021 finalists and the former Broadcom MASTERS finalists broke out by year to reconnect and get to know one another.

Rachel Myers