We awoke this Wednesday, nervous and excited for judging. After a hurried and rather quiet breakfast, we all got dressed and headed to the Phoenix Convention Center to begin our 9 hours of strenuous judging, stopping for a quick photo. The Convention Center was completely packed, full of formally-dressed finalists, ready to give their presentations. Wishing each other luck, we went our separate ways to our posters. We were greeted with our schedule for grand awards judging. The first hour, from eight to nine, was reserved for special awards, where we all eagerly waited for judges with red ribbons to approach our projects.
The next portion (until lunch at 11:45), was for our scheduled judges. Each interview with a grand award judge was allotted fifteen minutes, concluding with a bell and a flurry of movement. We ate lunch at Majerle’s, during which we discussed how our interviews went and guessed at the number of judges we would get during the second half. Judging resumed at 1:15 and went until 3:15. From 3:15-5:00, projects were visited by unscheduled judges from a multitude of backgrounds ranging from electrical engineers to HIV physicians. Relieved, everyone rushed out of the exhibition hall into the foyer, where we were greeted by enthusiastic crowds.
In the evening, we proceeded to watch a scientific circus, which consisted of amazing acrobatic acts, magic tricks, and puns. Aakshi, Martha, and I took photos with the talented performers. Altogether, today was a very eventful and exhilarating day.
Wilbur Cross High School, New Haven