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XPRIZE to Award $1 Million National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

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XPRIZE to Award $1 Million National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

GTP Staff
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San Jose, California’s Valley Christian Schools’ Ocean Quest team is among three finalist teams seeking a $1 million prize in part of the Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE competition

 Valley Christian Schools’ (VCS) Ocean Quest team has defied the odds, competing against an elite group of corporations and universities from around the world in the Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE competition. In the bonus round of competition, teams were asked to design new technology with the ability to detect chemicals in the open ocean and trace them to their source, with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) offering a $1 million prize for the most successful team. VCS students traveled to Florida in November of 2017 and to Puerto Rico this past January, becoming the youngest group in XPRIZE history to make it to the final round of an XPRIZE competition.

Valley Christian Schools Logo

“As a mentor, I’ve been so impressed with the students’ work ethic and determination despite being up against seemingly impossible odds,” says Danny Kim, Vice President and Director of VCS’ AMSE Institute and team leader for Ocean Quest.

After making it to the semi-finals in the $7 million Ocean Discovery XPRIZE last year, the students pressed on and as finalists are now aiming to win the NOAA Bonus Prize. The students’ drive and fortitude impressed not only their mentors, but also, the XPRIZE team.

“It has been incredible to see a team this young grow and become more confident in their abilities as the competition progressed, and to compete against seasoned professionals who have been working in ocean engineering for many years,” says Dr. Jyotika Virmani, Executive Director of the Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE. “These young engineers and leaders have the ability to change the future for the better, making sure that our oceans are healthy, valued, and understood.”

The winner will be announced Friday, May 31st at the Ocean Discovery XPRIZE Awards Ceremony in Monaco–where seven VCS students and three of the adult leaders will be in attendance, hoping to collect their prize and inspire young people everywhere.

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