DURING WORLD WATER WEEK, WINNER OF CIWEM’S YOUTH WATER PRIZE ‘TOMORROW’S WATER’ WILL REPRESENT THE UK AT INTERNATIONAL FINAL IN SWEDEN
Sam Cook, winner of CIWEM’s 2012 ‘Tomorrow’s Water’ competition will travel to Stockholm in August to represent the UK in one of the world’s most prestigious student competitions for water-related research. He will showcase his work and ideas to an international audience of eminent water scientists, engineers and researchers.
‘Tomorrow’s Water’, CIWEM’s Youth Water Prize, is the national water and environment contest for the country’s most talented junior water scientist or engineer to represent the UK at the Stockholm Junior Water Prize (SWJP). The standard of entries this year was incredibly high and Sam Cook from Poole Grammar School, emerged as the winner for his study of the foundations of aquatic biodiversity and the importance of diatoms and their varying forms in the aquatic life chain. The judges felt that his project was not only well researched, well written and presented well but that he had shown creativity in developing a new system of diatom identification in the UK, very important in terms of biodiversity assessment and environmental management.
Mairi Bell, from Hazelhead Academy in Aberdeen, received the Highly Commended Award for her project on Diagnosing Embryo Abnormalities in Zooplankton, which involved her developing some pioneering laboratory techniques. Her results also challenged current methods of assessing Zooplankton populations.
Judge Richard Laikin, Director of Utilities at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, said:
“It was an honour to host the final of this competition again this year. Raising the profile of water and environmental challenges at school level is critical if we are going to develop the skills to solve them in the future, and this competition is an important contributor to that effort. The students had all put a great deal of work into their projects and it was inspiring to hear them talk about water issues with such passion and intelligence.”
Judge Maria Inglis, Education Officer at WaterAid, commented:
“The standard of entries was incredibly high, with some really well researched and investigated pieces of work. All the applicants were fantastically articulate and friendly and very knowledgeable about their subjects. It was a pleasure to meet such dedicated and enthusiastic young people, who no doubt are the future of science in the UK.”
Judge Paul Horton, CIWEM Director of Membership & International Affairs, added:
“This competition is inspiring and the entrants are not only articulate, well presented, they demonstrate strong intellect and a passion for the environment. The students are a credit to themselves and their schools.”
On winning the award, Sam said:
“Tomorrow’s Water was a great experience. I was able to discuss my project with experts in their fields and also see what other people had done. All of the projects were very different but all of the work was to such a high calibre. After a long deliberation by the judges, it was announced that my project had won – I just couldn’t believe it. Twelve months ago I fell into a pond collecting samples and now I’m going to Stockholm to present my work at World Water Week. I cannot wait.”
Sam will be representing the UK at the International Stockholm Junior Water Prize held during World Water Week in Stockholm on 25-30 August 2012.