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Melissa Todisco, Hunter Public Relations for 3M
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Christina Scripps, Discovery Communications

–“America’s Top Young Scientist” Receives $50,000 in U.S. Savings Bonds —

(NEW YORK) – Discovery Education and 3M today awarded Liam McCarty of Elm Grove, Wis., with the title of “America’s Top Young Scientist” as winner of the 2010 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge for his innovative wound closure system that better protects deep cuts. McCarty was one of 10 finalists who competed this morning in a series of live science challenges in New York City. A student of Brookfield Academy, McCarty will receive $50,000 in U.S. Savings Bonds ($25,000 cash value) and a trip to St. Paul, Minn. to visit the 3M Innovation Center and work alongside 3M’s top scientists to test and enhance his prototype.

Selected from hundreds of students from across the country, the ten finalists competed in a series of challenges and experienced hands-on interaction with some of 3M’s top scientists who served as mentors, as the students were asked to: 1) communicate principles of science behind unusual phenomenons, such as a disappearing beaker or how a hand can be set on fire without leaving burns; 2) test the validity of the “Five Second Rule” as it relates to food safety; and 3) invent a solution to a safety or security problem found in society.

Finalists were evaluated by a panel of judges on their science skills and their ability to communicate scientific knowledge. Head judge Steve Jacobs, an accomplished scientist, educator and author, joined a team of scientists and educators from across the country to form the judging panel.

“Satisfying curiosity has been at the heart of Discovery`s mission and DNA for 25 years and we recognize the importance of nurturing interest in science education among America`s youth,” said David Zaslav, President and CEO, Discovery Communications. “Liam McCarty and all of this year`s participants of the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge demonstrated the strength and promise of our next generation of science and technology leaders.”

“The opportunity to encourage and celebrate science achievement among our nation’s top students carries great meaning for the future of our society,” added Robert MacDonald, President, 3M Foundation. “Innovation is a way of life at 3M and the inventing never stops. We’ll look to the talented minds of the next generation like those represented today to lead us to new frontiers of discovery in the years to come. We at 3M congratulate them all.

Sydney Clark from Austin, Texas was awarded second place in the nation’s premier science competition for inventing a way to prevent thieves from stealing pin numbers at ATMs. Clark is homeschooled through the Clark Academy of Science and Art. Matthew Shimura from Honolulu, Hawaii was awarded third place for his invention of a protective film that can prevent windows from breaking during high winds. Shimura currently attends Punahou School. Both Clark and Shimura will receive a $1,000 cash prize and a trip to the set of Discovery Channel’s MythBusters. Fourth and fifth place (tie) contestants, Liam O’Brien of Irving A. Robbins Middle School in Unionville, Conn., Kai Klocke of Cedar Park Middle School in Portland, Ore. and Alexander Mataloni of South County Secondary School in Fairfax Station, Va., each will receive a $1,000 cash prize and a Discovery Student Adventures Spring Break Trip to the Grand Canyon.

Remaining finalists each will receive a $1,000 cash prize and a $500 gift card from Discovery Experiences, which offers first-hand, memorable adventures they see and learn about on Discovery`s networks. Finalists include:

  • Riya Chandra, Fremont, Calif., The Harker School
  • Sehee Kim, Cumming, Ga., South Forsyth High School
  • Raj Raina, Novi, Mich., Novi High School
  • Christopher Riedman, Bismarck, N.D., Horizon Middle School
  • Finalists of the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge were all awarded an all-expenses-paid trip to New York City and a prize pack, including a HUB backpack filled with Discovery Education DVDs, games, a digital camcorder and various other prizes, and a vast assortment of some of 3M`s most innovative products.

    As the grand prize winner, McCarty is the recipient of the 3M “Innovation Prize,” for which he will visit 3M`s global headquarters in St. Paul, MN, and learn about technology platforms like microreplication, nanotechnology, advanced materials and processing. 3M`s world class Innovation Center will introduce him to talented scientists who will share insights about their careers, centered around innovation.

    Coinciding with the announcement of this year’s winner, Discovery Education and 3M are beginning the search for “America’s Top Young Scientist” of 2011. For more information on the 2010 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge, or to register for the 2011 challenge, go to

    About the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge
    As the nation’s premier science competition for middle school students, the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge targets students in the years when research indicates their interest in science begins to fade and encourages them to explore scientific concepts and creatively communicate their findings. In January, students nationwide were asked to create a one- to two-minute video about one of four topics that relate to the science of safety and security: building wind-resistant structures, sun protection, preventing the spread of germs and disease, and food safety. In July, state semifinalists were selected based on their science communication skills exhibited in their videos. In August, the top 10 national finalists were selected. For more information on the challenge, including ages and entry videos of the 10 finalists, go to

    About Discovery Education
    Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) revolutionized television with Discovery Channel and is now transforming classrooms through Discovery Education. Powered by the number one nonfiction media company in the world, Discovery Education combines scientifically proven, standards-based digital media and a dynamic user community in order to empower teachers to improve student achievement. Already, more than half of all U.S. schools access Discovery Education digital services. Explore the future of education at

    About 3M
    A recognized leader in research and development, 3M produces thousands of innovative products for dozens of diverse markets. 3M’s core strength is applying its more than 40 distinct technology platforms – often in combination – to a wide array of customer needs. With $23 billion in sales, 3M employs 75,000 people worldwide and has operations in more than 65 countries. For more information, visit or follow @3MNews on Twitter.

    * All finalists were in grades 5-8 at time of competition entry.