Robert H. Herndon Memorial Science Competition
This year’s competition
The 36th annual Robert H. Herndon Memorial Science Competition was celebrated on April 11, 2013, on the East Coast and one week later on April 18, 2013, on the West Coast.
Middle and high school students displayed their scientific prowess with both experiements and essays on a variety of topics. Monetary prizes were awarded to winners.
Students also enjoyed tours of the Aerospace facilities, as well as a keynote speaker and award ceremony.
The West Coast keynote speaker was Dr. Kenneth Philips, curator, California Science Center, for the Space Shuttle Endeavor’s Journey to Los Angeles. Garnett Stowe, president and CEO of Stowe Strategic Services, was the keynote speaker on the East Coast.
Check out a video featuring this year’s group of young competitors.
In 1977, The Aerospace Corporation established the Robert H. Herndon Memorial Science Competition. This event provides middle and high school students in Los Angeles County an opportunity to participate annually in the El Segundo portion of the essay and/or science experiment competition.
In 2000, a Washington-area Herndon Memorial Science Competition was established and is also held annually.
The award is named for the late Robert H. Herndon, an Aerospace engineer and manager who served as a mentor for many at the corporation. The competition events are designed to stimulate interest among minority students in science, engineering, and technology, and increase diversity across the aerospace industry.
EXPERIMENT COMPETITION | The experiment portion of the competition is divided into middle and high school sections. Teams compete by demonstrating their science experiments for a team of judges representing Aerospace and the Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC). High school and middle school entries are judged separately.
Each team must have a faculty sponsor and is assigned an advisor from the corporation. Up to $150 is given to each team as reimbursement for experiment materials.
ESSAY COMPETITION | Middle and high school students may also participate in the essay portion of the competition. Submitted essays must be original in content and each essay must feature a scientific topic. Teachers and the Aerospace advisor can provide some support and background in researching the essay subject matter. Submitted essays are read by a review committee of Aerospace employees and SMC personnel.
Essay students who do not compete in the experiment portion of the competition are invited to tour the corporation’s laboratories and attend panel discussions on various topics.
Each member of the winning experiment team will be awarded a prize.
A first-, second-, and third-place team will be selected for both middle and high school participants.
In the essay competition, first- and second-place awards will be given based on the merits of the essays submitted in both the middle and high school categories.
For more information on either event, contact Terita Norton at [email protected].