BETTENDORF, IOWA (September 18, 2023) — A sixteen-year-old student from Bettendorf, Iowa, is currently one of thirty semi-finalists from across the globe in the annual, Breakthrough Junior Challenge competition. Himanshu Jangid, who created an original science video, is now in the running to receive $400,000 worth of prizes, including a college scholarship and a new science lab for their school. Additionally, Himanshu is the first-ever Breakthrough Jr semi-finalist from Iowa.
Founded in 2015, the Breakthrough Junior Challenge is a global science video contest that encourages students to create engaging and imaginative videos that demonstrate difficult scientific concepts and theories in the physical or life sciences. Think: Steven Spielberg meets Albert Einstein.
The finalists’ videos are already up on YouTube and Facebook, and the general public can vote for a people’s choice winner in the Popular Vote Challenge between now and September 20.
Himanshu’s video focuses on a gene-editing technology, commonly referred to as CRISPR. CRISPR is used to selectively modify the DNA of living organisms, which, in theory, could be used to treat cancers and genetic disorders, prevent infectious diseases, and more. Outside of science, Himanshu is one of the founding members of the school’s Cyber Security Club. He also spends time practicing Taekwondo and is currently a Jr Black Belt and is working towards earning his Black Belt.