FLORHAM PARK, NJ, April 21, 2016 – Nick Rauschenberger, an eighth grader from Ridgedale Middle School in Florham Park, New Jersey, recently won the New Jersey state You Be The Chemist Challenge®. Competing against 31 middle school students, he will represent New Jersey at the 12th annual National You Be The Chemist Challenge® in Philadelphia on June 20.
Developed by the Chemical Educational Foundation® (CEF), the Challenge is a question and answer competition that motivates fifth to eighth grade students to test their knowledge of chemistry concepts and real-world applications as they compete to represent their state on a national level.
BASF Corporation and Brenntag Specialties sponsor the National Challenge and the New Jersey state challenge, which took place at BASF’s North American headquarters in Florham Park, NJ. The program is widely supported by BASF’s African American Employee Group, whose members serve as role models and encourage student participation.
“As the world’s largest chemical company, BASF understands the importance of engaging students in science education at an early age,” said Robin Rotenberg, Vice President of Communications for BASF in North America. “Our strength as a company lies in our ability to find innovative solutions to meet the needs of the future. It is essential that we support and develop the best scientific and technical talents.”
“The students in the Challenge consistently impress us with their level of knowledge and enthusiasm,” said Tom Corcoran, Senior Vice President of Brenntag North America. “It is rewarding to see industry members and educators playing such a key role in motivating students to learn both inside and outside of the classroom, and to discover the ways chemistry is embedded in their everyday lives.”
At the national competition on June 20, 2016, the top four finalists will receive scholarships totaling $18,500.
“Competing in the Challenge is a wonderful way for middle school students to explore the chemistry of their everyday lives,” said John Rice, CEF Executive Director. “The competition brings teachers, parents and local industry members together to support students – inside and outside of the classroom – in learning about science, its impact on society and the variety of careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields.”
About the Chemical Educational Foundation®
Founded in 1989 and headquartered in Arlington, VA, the Chemical Educational Foundation ® (CEF) works closely with industry to enhance science education opportunities for our youth. CEF founded the You Be The Chemist Challenge ® in 2004.