National STEM Video Game Challenge Names Competition Winners

The Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop and E-Line Media have announced the names of 16 middle school and high school students as the winners of the 2013 National STEM Video Game Challenge. The competition aims to motivate interest in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) among students in grades 5-12 by tapping into their enthusiasm for playing and making video games. The top original video games and game design concepts were selected in 14 categories from nearly 4000 entries.

The 2013 STEM Challenge winners are:

Middle School (grades 5-8)

NameTitlePlatform (Category)City, State
Seong-Hyun RyooRare EarthGamemakerJohns Creek, GA
Angel Martinez-AcevedoThe ArcadeGameStar MechanicDeRidder, LA
Nicholas CameronMath RocksKoduSayville, NY
Nicolas BadilaStemvilleConstruct 2 (Open Platform)Jonesboro, GA
Bradley SchmitzPixel JetScratchGlandorf, OH
Henry Edwards and Kevin KopczynskiEtiquette AnarchyMultimedia Fusion 2 (Team)Durham, NC
Lexi SchneiderHead of the ClassWrittenDresher, PA

High School (grades 9-12)

NameTitlePlatform (Category)City, State
Sooraj SureshPixel Star OneGamemakerCampbell, CA
Kieran LuscombeAn Untold AdventureGameStar MechanicThorton, CO
Cody HauglandThe Amazing GameKoduSanger, CA
Aaron GaudetteCrystal PhysicsUnity (Open Platform)Ramstein Air Base, Germany
Brianna IgbinosunI F.L.YScratchLawrenceville, GA
Noah Ratcliff and Pamela Pizarro-RuizFogC# with XNA (Team)Pickerington, OH
Janice TranLittle Green PlanetWrittenPalmdale, CA

Each winner will receive an AMD-powered laptop computer with game design and educational software. The individual’s or team’s sponsor organization will receive a cash prize of $2000.

“Youth are natural inventors. They are increasingly shaping their own education by making things,” said Michael H. Levine, Executive Director of the Joan Ganz Cooney Center. “We are delighted by the record-breaking interest in the National STEM Video Challenge this year and congratulate all of the winners on their superb creative entries.”

The 2013 STEM Challenge is presented by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop and E-Line Media along with title sponsors the Entertainment Software Association, the AMD FoundationMicrosoft’s Xbox 360 and national community sponsors the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and the Hive Digital Media Learning Fund in The New York Community Trust. National outreach partners are BrainPOPthe Corporation for Public Broadcasting PBS KIDS Ready To Learn Initiative, Global Kids, Learning Games Network and Edmodo.

The IMLS and Hive were new sponsors this year. Together, they funded a series of STEM Challenge game design workshops to empower young people to utilize creative problem-solving and STEM skills to learn how to build video games. IMLS is a federal agency whose mission is to foster libraries as community centers and to innovate the array and depth of programming to serve the needs of  communities. The Hive Digital Media Learning initiative awards grants to bring kids, teachers, scientists and artists together to learn and create beyond the classroom.

The National STEM Video Game Challenge was inspired by President Obama’s “Educate to Innovate Campaign.” Twenty-eight youth were selected as winners in 2012 and three of those winners participated in the 2013 White House Science Fair in April.

Source: Press Release