Inspiring middle school students to explore STEM pathways is critical to building a robust STEM workforce for the future, and research continues to show that middle school is a critical point in influencing student knowledge, attitude, motivation and interest in pursuing future STEM career paths.
The Society for Science is seeking a new title sponsor for the organization’s national middle school STEM research competition, the Broadcom MASTERS. This is the second time since its founding in 1999 that the Society is looking for a title sponsor for this competition.
Title sponsorship of the middle school competition offers an unparalleled platform to champion the future STEM workforce and directly supports middle school students, their schools, teachers and parents in their local communities, regionally and nationally. The Society’s national middle school STEM research competition garners national attention from the country’s top media outlets, driving significant one-of-a-kind visibility for the title sponsor.
The Society’s middle school STEM research competition engages and inspires young scientists, engineers and innovators who will solve the world’s most pressing problems. The program reaches a diverse range of students across the United States, from rural America to urban cities and encourages young people from all cultures and backgrounds to build an inclusive STEM community.
From 2017-2021 an average of 65,000 middle school students competed in approximately 275 Society-Affiliated Fairs across the United States. These competitions, which exist in nearly every state, are conducted at local, regional and state levels and affiliate with the Society’s middle school STEM research competition.
The top 10% of students in the 6th, 7th and 8th grades at each Affiliated Fair win the opportunity to apply to this national middle school competition. Students submit online applications for their projects and science fair experience in mid-June, with the top 300 selected as semifinalists. Thirty finalists are selected from those 300 to compete for more than $100,000 in awards in October of each year in Washington, DC.
For the past decade, the Society’s national middle school STEM research competition, currently titled Broadcom MASTERS, has been supported by the Broadcom Foundation at $2.2 million annually. The 2021-2022 program cycle will complete the Broadcom Foundation’s highly successful 12-year partnership.
“Broadcom Foundation’s more than decade-long partnership with the Society is grounded in a shared belief that the science fair experience inspires middle schoolers to follow their passion and choose high school electives in STEM they need to open exciting college and career opportunities,” said Paula Golden, President of Broadcom Foundation. “Broadcom Foundation fully intends to continue its support of the science fair community because we know first-hand that competition alumni are on their way to solving society’s grand challenges as next generation scientists, engineers and innovators.”
“Middle school is a formative period in young people’s lives,” said Maya Ajmera, President and CEO of the Society for Science and Publisher of Science News. “It is a time when they are beginning to determine their interests and aspirations. Through our middle school science competition, the Society is able to provide these young people with the confidence and support they need to continue their STEM journey in college and career. We must invest in these young people now as they will be the ones who solve our world’s most intractable problems.”
A request for proposal is available at www.societyforscience.org/middleschoolsponsorship. Interested entities should visit the site to learn more about the sponsorship opportunity and RFP process which opens today and closes on January 31, 2022.