Public Release: 

Unique exposure for middle school students

Broadcom Foundation and AFTAU provide rare opportunity for Israeli students

American Friends of Tel Aviv University

This year, the Broadcom Foundation-supported Broadcom MASTERS® International program once again provided a rare opportunity for collaboration between middle-school-age scientists and engineers from around the world, bringing together students from 16 countries who share a passion for STEM -- Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. And American Friends of Tel Aviv University (AFTAU), an official sponsor of the program, facilitated the opportunity for two Israeli students to participate in this experience of a lifetime.

Ilay Pecker, 13, of Rishon Iezion and Ori Shaham, 12, of Modiin received essential travel and visa support from AFTAU, permitting them to participate as Broadcom MASTERS Delegates and Official Observers at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF), the largest high school science fair competition in the world, being held this month in Pittsburgh, PA. They joined delegates from Australia, China, India, Ireland, and 11 other countries around the world.

All-expense-paid inspiration for middle school students

The Broadcom MASTERS® program supports middle school students who demonstrate interest and aptitude in STEM subjects, inspiring them to stay with math, science, and engineering throughout high school and beyond.

Through an all-expense paid trip to the Intel ISEF Fair, students have a rare opportunity to visit Carnegie Mellon University, engage with Broadcom engineers and employees and STEM professionals, observe the projects of high school students who share their enthusiasms, and engage in special events designed to foster team-building and leadership skills.

"Ilay and Ori are superb delegates representing Israel, and the Broadcom MASTERS International gives them a great opportunity to explore their passions as young scientists and engineers, thanks to the new partnership with Tel Aviv University," says Paula Golden, the President and Executive Director of the Broadcom Foundation.

Finding potential through passion

The Broadcom MASTERS® International program seeks to inspire enthusiasm for STEM subjects through project-based learning, embedding science, engineering, and education by allowing students to choose subjects that leverage their own curiosity and interests, says Golden. "This is a paradigm shift, an approach shared by the Broadcom Foundation, the Broadcom Corporation, and Tel Aviv University itself. It allows the students to find their own potential through something they love."

For his "Drop the Drops" project, Ori Shaham invented an eye-dropper bottle with a concave mirror that allows easier application of eye medication. In "Spirulina algae -- the Food of the Future?" Ilay Pecker studied the effects of various environmental conditions on Spirulina growth, believing that the high nutritional value of the algae may be vital in the fight against world hunger.

The program also strengthens the already strong link between Tel Aviv University and international partners like the Broadcom Foundation. Broadcom Vice President Dr. Shlomo Markel also serves as the Chairman of the Board of RAMOT, Tel Aviv University's technology transfer organization.

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American Friends of Tel Aviv University (http://www.aftau.org) supports Israel's most influential, most comprehensive and most sought-after center of higher learning, Tel Aviv University (TAU). US News & World Report's Best Global Universities Rankings rate TAU as #148 in the world, and the Times Higher Education World University Rankings rank TAU Israel's top university. It is one of a handful of elite international universities rated as the best producers of successful startups, and TAU alumni rank #9 in the world for the amount of venture capital they attract.

A leader in the pan-disciplinary approach to education, TAU is internationally recognized for the scope and groundbreaking nature of its research and scholarship -- attracting world-class faculty and consistently producing cutting-edge work with profound implications for the future.

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