Announcing: The 66th Annual Orange County Science & Engineering Fair

With COVID-19 still threatening to cancel the on-site fair, the OCSEF committee is preparing to have next year’s fair either on-site or online, as we carefully watch all the news and developments surrounding the global pandemic.

OCSEF announces January 4th, 2021 as the opening day for project registrations. The Scientific Review Committee Applications (prerequisite to OCSEF Application) will be open from August 15th, 2020 onwards.There are twenty award categories and an additional twenty special-awards given by leading institutes such as OC Sanitation and Water districts, California Water Environment Association, American Chemical Society and many others.

Registration will continue through March 1, 2021.

This year, putting the safety of their students and teachers first, the OCSEF leadership has canceled its annual event for the first time in its 65 years, due to COVID-19.  “This was indeed a very difficult and challenging decision for us to make,” said Prasanthi Sathyaprakash, President of OCSEF. She asked the applicants to take pictures of their poster board and film 1-3 minutes of video of them presenting for the judges. “As we plan for next year’s fair, if for safety reasons we won’t be able to have an on-site fair, we will ask the applicants to present their projects on a zoom call with the judges.”

Since 1955, the OCSEF mission has been to enable students to improve their science and engineering skills and literacy while inspiring them to consider careers in STEM fields. We are committed to challenging students to inquire, design, investigate, and present scientific and engineering concepts through hands-on experimentation. Over 600 projects from 52 Schools in Orange County were accepted for the fair in 2020, as we encourage more and more students, from diverse backgrounds, to engage in STEM education.

“In April we launched our new and improved website that not only archives past winners and projects in the long history of the fair, but also puts emphasis on being a prominent source of knowledge as students are researching for the projects,” says Sathyprakash.  “Our resources page is an open door to the world of STEM education research and we encourage students to use it for inspiration as they plan their 2021 project.”