Society for Science & the Public launches campaign to identify title sponsor of the Science Talent Search

75 year-old academic competition for high school seniors seeks third title sponsor in storied history.

WASHINGTON, September 9, 2015—Society for Science & the Public (the Society) announced today they are seeking a new title sponsor for the Science Talent Search, the nation’s oldest and most prestigious high school science competition.The new sponsor will assume sole title sponsorship of this premier competition beginning in April 2017.

The Science Talent Search has been identifying and celebrating the best and brightest young scientific minds in the United States for 75 years. It has only become available for a title sponsor twice since its inception in 1942. The competition receives more than 1,800 applications each year from high school seniors across the country, all vying to be among the nation’s top 300 honored young scientists, from which 40 finalists are selected to compete in a week-long competition in Washington, DC.

The Society will initiate and manage a competitive process to find the best partner for the future of the Science Talent Search. A Request for Proposals is being made available today at Would-be sponsors should visit to learn more and indicate their interest in participating in the process. The next sponsor will commit at least $6 million annually for a minimum initial sponsorship term of five years.

“The Science Talent Search is the nation’s talent pipeline for future scientists, innovators, entrepreneurs, and leaders. This one-of-a-kind program recognizes and inspires the brightest young minds in America who will benefit the world for generations to come,” said Maya Ajmera, President and CEO of the Society, and a 1985 Science Talent Search alumna. “We are thrilled for the opportunity to welcome a new sponsor as a partner – only the third in the 75-year history of the Science Talent Search – in this most special relationship. They will play an integral role in informing, educating, and inspiring students across the nation, while reaping the benefits associated with this extraordinary competition.”

Student entrants to the Science Talent Search submit original research in critically important scientific fields of study and are judged by leading experts in their fields. Often, these students endeavor to solve some of the world’s most pressing challenges with promising research on medical issues, technology breakthroughs and social innovations. Unique among high school competitions in the U.S.and globally, the Science Talent Search focuses on identifying the next generation of scientists and engineers who will provide critical leadership in shaping the future of research and development for our nation and the world.

Together with the title sponsor, the Society annually rewards the achievements of the top 300 Science Talent Search students and their schools, thereby promoting a strong commitment to STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) research and education. In 2015, this totaled more than $1.6 million in awards, including three top awards of $150,000.

Sponsors have found that the competition not only enhances their corporate reputation among key influencers, it has also given them the opportunity to raise awareness of their commitment to education and innovation, including through significant media exposure. As an example, the finalists and representatives of the Society and the sponsor organization visit influencers on Capitol Hill each year, and student finalists have met personally with 11 U.S Presidents including John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, and Barack Obama.

“When the Science Talent Search sponsorship became available in 1997, it was an opportunity we couldn’t pass up,” said Craig Barrett, former CEO and Chairman of the Board of Intel Corporation and current Society Trustee. “The Science Talent Search stands at the center of our nation’s effort to promote science and research to the next generation, and there is no doubt in my mind that it has been instrumental in encouraging the next generation of scientists, engineers and innovators.”

“Intel is proud of the legacy we have helped create around the Science Talent Search in partnership with the Society for Science & the Public,” said Shelly Esque, Vice President of Intel Corporate Affairs Group. “After the 2017 event when our sponsorship concludes we know the Society will continue to provide outstanding leadership in recognizing the best and brightest science students in America.”

Program alumni include recipients of the world’s most coveted science and math honors, including five National Medals of Science, three Breakthrough Prizes, twelve MacArthur Foundation Fellowships, two Fields Medals and eight Nobel prizes. Distinguished Science Talent Search alumni include Society Trustees Mary Sue Coleman (retired president, University of Michigan), Tom Leighton (co-founder and CEO, Akamai Technologies), and Frank Wilczek (2004 Nobel Prize in Physics), among many others.

Intel is the title sponsor of the Science Talent Search, and has been since 1998. Intel renewed its contract in 2014 to 2017. For the first 50 years of the Science Talent Search, Westinghouse was the title sponsor.

About Society for Science & the Public

Society for Science & the Public is one of the nation’s oldest non-profit membership organizations dedicated to public engagement in science and science education. Established in 1921, the Society is a leading advocate for the understanding and appreciation of science and the vital role it plays in human advancement. Through its acclaimed education competitions, including the Intel Science Talent Search, the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, and the Broadcom MASTERS, and its award-winning publications,Science News and Science News for Students, the Society is committed to inform, educate, and inspire. The Society reaches more than 15 million people online each year, has more than four million followers across its social media channels, and recognizes more than 50,000 alumni of its competitions.The Society is supported each year by about 90,000 subscribing members and donors as well as by leading corporations, foundations, and other institutions.

For more information about the Society and its work, please visit

Society for Science & the Public
Sarah Wood