Students challenged to dig into erosion for a chance to win $1,000 in “Dig It! The Secrets of Soil Science Fair Project Contest”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 12, 2014
Entries from 2nd-7th grade California students accepted through World Soils Day on Friday, Dec. 5th for contest commemorating the 2015 International Year of Soils
SACRAMENTO, CALIF. – Nov. 12, 2014: The California Museum announced the “Dig It! The Secrets of Soil Science Fair Project Contest” today, which will award two California students with $1,000 scholarships underwritten by the Soil Science Society of America to commemorate the International Year of Soils in 2015.
Inspired by the national traveling exhibit “Dig It! The Secrets of Soil” designed by Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History now open at The California Museum through March 29, 2015, the contest challenges participants to develop an original hypothesis on how a particular factor impacts soil erosion, or the removal of soils faster than processes that form and replace them, conduct a controlled experiment to test their hypothesis and document their findings in a written report. For example, students may choose to investigate how a factor such as drought, farming practices or urban development relates to erosion.
“The Soil Science Society of America encourages students across California to enter the contest and explore one of the many environmental factors that cause erosion,” said Jan W. Hopmans, President of the Soil Science Society of America and Associate Dean Associate Dean of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at UC Davis. “As part of our ongoing efforts to inspire a new generation of scientists needed to safeguard soils and sustain life around the world in the 21st century, we’re proud to underwrite the scholarships as the contest’s presenting sponsor.”
From the entries submitted, 20 finalists will be selected and invited to present their projects for final judging on Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015 at a science fair to be held at the Museum, where a panel of judges will award two grand prize winners with a $1,000 scholarship each provided by Soil Science Society of America. The two grand prize winners’ projects will also be featured on the Museum’s web site and displayed in the lobby through the end of the “Dig It! The Secrets of Soil” exhibit on March 29, 2015.
“At the core of The California Museum’s mission is educating the next generation of innovators who will influence not just California, but the world,” said the Museum’s Executive Director Dori Moorehead. “Thanks to the Soil Science Society of America’s generous support, we’re able to provide students an opportunity to learn how the ground beneath their feet connects them to history and cultures in the state and beyond, along with a chance to win a scholarship. We hope participants will be inspired to continue their research through college and to pursue a career in science, where they can help shape a more sustainable future for soils as a fundamental resource needed for life here in California and all over the globe.”
Open to all 2nd through 7th grade students enrolled in a California public, private or home school during the 2014-15 school year, the contest is open and accepting entries through 5:00 p.m. on World Soils Day (Friday, Dec. 5, 2014). Students may enter their submissions as well as download official contest rules and report tips on the Museum’s web site at http://www.CaliforniaMuseum.org/Dig-It-Contest.
The “Dig It! The Secrets of Soil Science Fair Project Contest” is sponsored by the Soil Science Society of America in commemoration of the 2015 International Year of Soils and Media In Education, a division of The Sacramento Bee.
Brenna Hamilton, Communications & Marketing Director
The California Museum
Susan Fisk, Communications Director
Soil Science Society of America
ABOUT THE CALIFORNIA MUSEUM:
A self-supporting 501(c)3 non-profit, The California Museum — home of the California Hall of Fame — engages, educates and enlightens people about California’s rich history and unique contributions to the world through ideas, innovation, the arts and culture. Through interactive and innovative experiences, the Museum inspires men, women and children to dream the California dream and dares them to make their own mark on history. Open Tues.-Sat. 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.; Sun.: 12:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m. Admission: adults $9.00; college students & seniors $7.50 with valid ID; youth 6-17: $6.50; children 5 & under free. For more information, visit CaliforniaMuseum.org.
ABOUT SOIL SCIENCE SOCIETY OF AMERICA:
The Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) is a progressive, international scientific society that fosters the transfer of knowledge and practices to sustain global soils. Based in Madison, WI, SSSA is the professional home for 6,000+ members dedicated to advancing the field of soil science. It provides information about soils in relation to crop production, environmental quality, ecosystem sustainability, bioremediation, waste management, recycling and wise land use. Founded in 1936, SSSA proudly celebrated its 75th Anniversary in 2011. For more information, visit Soils.org.
Interviews available by request. Press images available for download at http://www.CaliforniaMuseum.org/press-images.