Chythanya Murali, or Chy, as she likes to be called, was a finalist in the 2014 Broadcom MASTERS from Little Rock, Arkansas. Her project on better methods for cleaning up oil spills and her performance during a week-long series of hands-on challenges landed her a first place award in engineering - complete with a $3,500 prize to use toward a summer camp experience anywhere in the country.
Chy chose to go to Yale. Read on for more on her experiences:
How did you hear about Broadcom MASTERS? What motivated you to apply after you were nominated?
I heard about Broadcom MASTERS during my 7th grade science fair when I was nominated for my project at my regional science fair. I applied simply to give it a try and find out what it was about, but now I am grateful that I took that chance. I became a semifinalist that year and worked harder the next year and was ultimately chosen as a finalist.
Which STEM summer camp program did you choose to use your award for? Tell us about the experience!
I chose the three-week academic summer camp program called the Summer Institute for the Gifted located at Yale University. The entire experience was wonderful, as I had the chance to meet people who were gifted in different areas and from whom I could learn. I was able to take different classes there that suited my interests in the sciences- everything from psychology to medical microbiology.
What is your standout memory from Broadcom MASTERS?
My standout memory from Broadcom MASTERS has to be orientation day at the hotel. I remember being nervous, but was calmed within half an hour as everyone there made us feel comfortable with each other through team building activities.
I made friends that I will never forget. I realized that everyone was kind and like me, were hoping for an experience of a lifetime.
Can you share some words of advice to other middle school students who want to explore STEM?
If you think you might like STEM, just go for it. You can pursue something else if you don’t like it, but you don't want to have regret that you never tried or took that opportunity.
Look out for more Broadcom MASTERS news! The 2015 semifinalist announcement is coming soon- August 19, 2015!