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Volusia Student Named 2017 Broadcom MASTERS Finalist


Photo Credit: Elijah Larrabee


Scott Tobin, former Creekside Middle student and current freshman at Spruce Creek High, has been named a top-30 finalist in the 7th annual Broadcom MASTERS —founded and produced by the Society for Science & the Public — the nation's most prestigious middle school STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) competition. Tobin will be competing for numerous awards, including a top prize of $25,000.
Broadcom MASTERS will recognize Tobin's Creekside Middle science teacher, Marty Ingoldsby, with a one-year classroom subscription to Science News magazine, and has awarded Creekside Middle with $1,000 to use toward STEM activities.
Tobin was selected by a panel of distinguished scientists and engineers from a record-high 2,499 applicants in 37 states, Puerto Rico and the Department of Defense overseas. The applicants were nominated to compete in the Broadcom MASTERS by placing among the top 10 percent of middle school competitors at Society-affiliated regional and state science fairs, which includes the Tomoka Regional Science and Engineering Fair.
Tobin's project is titled, By Using A Solar Powered Tesla Coil Can Water Be Made Potable Through Ozonification. Tobin wanted to find a new way to make water safe to drink, as his research discovered that nearly one billion people worldwide lack access to clean water. He thought a Tesla coil could help. And, if it was solar-powered, it could work almost anywhere. Tobin won first place in Environmental Engineering at the Tomoka Regional Science and Engineering Fair in January.
"The Tomoka Regional Science and Engineering Fair celebrated its 50th year of being the area's oldest STEM competition," said Jeremy Blinn, secondary science specialist for Volusia County Schools. "Now, we celebrate with Scott, his parents, and his teachers for this amazing accomplishment of being selected as a Broadcom MASTERS Finalist."
Tobin will receive a $500 cash award and an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. for the competition, where he will compete for the following awards:

  • $25,000 Samueli Foundation Prize, a gift of Susan and Henry Samueli, Co-Founder of Broadcom Corporation, Chairman of the Broadcom Foundation, and Chief Technical Officer of Broadcom Limited, for the student who demonstrates mastery of all STEM fields, and exemplifies how research, innovation and teamwork come together to impact our everyday lives.
  • $20,000 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for Health Advancement, which recognizes the student whose work and performance shows the most promise in health-related fields.
  • $10,000 Marconi/Samueli Award for Innovation, awarded to a student who demonstrates prowess in electrical engineering.
  • $7,500 Lemelson Award for Invention, awarded by The Lemelson Foundation to a young inventor creating promising solutions to real-world problems.
  • First and Second Place Awards issued in each category of STEM will receive $3,500 or $2,500, respectively, to use toward a STEM summer camp experience, plus an iPad.


Winners will be named on October 24 after finalists compete in a rigorous competition that will test their abilities in STEM, critical thinking, communication, creativity and collaboration.

2017 Broadcom MASTERS Fast Facts:

  • Finalists include 15 female and 15 male students, representing 30 schools across 17 states.
  • California has 10 finalists, Pennsylvania has three, and New York and Florida each have two. The other states, who are represented by one finalist each, include Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Louisiana, Montana, North Carolina, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, Utah, Virginia and Washington.
  • Finalist projects cover multiple disciplines of science, including environmental and earth science, medicine and health science, electrical and mechanical engineering, microbiology, biochemistry, bioengineering, computer science, software engineering, behavioral and social sciences, energy and sustainability, animal science, chemistry, and plant science.
  • For a full listing of the 2017 finalists and project descriptions visit:
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