2019 Winners


The Samueli Foundation Prize: $25,000

Winner: Alaina Gassler

Project: Improving Automobile Safety by Removing Blindspots

Alaina Gassler, 14, West Grove, Pennsylvania, won the $25,000 Samueli Foundation Prize, for her project reducing blind spots in cars and her exemplary performance during the Broadcom MASTERS’s hands-on challenges. The prize is a gift of Dr. Henry Samueli, Chairman of the Board, Broadcom Inc., and Chair of the Broadcom Foundation and his wife, Dr. Susan Samueli, President of the Samueli Foundation.

Lemelson Award for Invention: $10,000

Winner: Rachel Bergey

Project: Spotted Lanternflies: Stick’em or Trick’em

Rachel Bergey, 14, Harleysville, Pennsylvania, won the $10,000 Lemelson Award for Invention, awarded by The Lemelson Foundation to a young inventor creating promising solutions to real-world problems. Rachel developed a trap made of tinfoil and netting for the Spotted Lanternfly, an invasive species causing damage to trees in Pennsylvania.

Marconi/Samueli Award for Innovation: $10,000

Winner: Sidor Clare

Project: Bound and Bricked

Sidor Clare, 14, Sandy, Utah, won the $10,000 Marconi/Samueli Award for Innovation, an honor made possible by Samueli’s generous donation of his 2012 Marconi Society Prize Award.  Sidor developed bricks that could one day be made on Mars, so that humans would not be required to bring building materials with us in order to build there.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for Health Advancement: $10,000

Winner: Alexis MacAvoy

Project: Designing Efficient, Low-Cost, Eco-Friendly Activated Carbon for Removal of Heavy Metals from Water

Alexis MacAvoy, 14, Hillsborough, California, won the $10,000 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for Health Advancement, which recognizes the student whose work and performance shows the most promise in health-related fields and demonstrates an understanding of the many social factors that affect health. Alexis designed a water filter using carbon to remove heavy metals from water.

STEM Talent Award, sponsored by DoD STEM: $10,000

Winner: Lauren Ejiaga

Project: Ozone Depletion: How it Affects Us

Lauren Ejiaga, 14, New Orleans, Louisiana, won the $10,000 STEM Talent Award, sponsored by DoD STEM, for demonstrating excellence in science, technology, engineering or math, along with the leadership and technical skills necessary to excel in the 21st Century STEM workforce and build a better community for tomorrow. Lauren’s research focused on how current levels of ultraviolet light from the sun due to ozone depletion impacts plant growth and performance.

STEM Award Winners

First and second place winners of STEM Awards demonstrated acumen and promise in science, technology, engineering and math. First place winners were awarded $3,500 and second place winners receive $2,500 to support his or her choice of a STEM summer camp experience in the U.S. Each STEM Award winner also received an iPad. Top awards in math were sponsored by Robert John Floe, President, Floe Financial Partners.

Science Award

First place: Ruhi YusufEffectiveness of Different Plants as Coagulants to Purify Contaminated Drinking Water

Second place: Tyler BissoondialIdentification and Characterization of Salt-Tolerant (stl) Mutants in Raphanus sativus

Technology Award

First place: Kassie HoltBound and Bricked

Second place: Rishab JainThe Pancreas Detective: A Novel Artificial-Intelligence-Based Post-Biopsy Tool to Screen Genetic Mutations Towards Personalizing Pancreatic Cancer Treatment

Engineering Award

First place: Rylan GardnerStall/Spin Recovery Via Increased Lift and Upwards Pitching Moment Using the Magnus Effect

Second place: Mercedes RandhahnOpioid-Like Deactivation


Mathematics Award

First place: Isabelle KatzAnalyzing Musical Instruments/Voice Using Signal Analysis and A Novel Color-Fingerprinting Technique for Vocal Training

Second place: Johan DeMessieSalt-Stain Effect for a Rapid, Low-Cost Analysis of Drinking Water

Rising Stars Award

In recognition of their promise as two of the youngest competitors, two Rising Stars win a trip to Anaheim, California in May 2020 as the United States delegate to Broadcom MASTERS International and Official Observer at International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF), the world’s largest international high school science fair competition.

Mary Shea BallantineAutomotive Exhaust: Creating a Selective Environment for Bacteria


Kyle Tianshi, A Microscopic Particle Detector Using Laser Microscopy and Image Processing


Team Award

Each member of the team that best demonstrates their ability to work together and solve problems through shared decision making, communication and scientific and engineering collaboration will receive a gift card to a science supply company to support their interests in STEM.

Green Team: Lauren U.C. Ejiaga, Kassie Holt, Alexis Tea MacAvoy, Ashwin Prabhakar and Kyle Tianshi

Scott A. McGregor Leadership Award:

Finalists select one student from the group based on their leadership abilities to represent their class as a speaker at the awards ceremony.

David AnandMonitoring water quality of the Yellow Creek Watershed using macro-invertebrate sampling and automated continuous testing with a DIY microcontroller for physical and chemical measurements