Rest easy, everyone. The next generation of scientists is already hard at work solving our biggest problems. Take Deepika Kurup, a 14-year-old high school student from Nashua, New Hampshire. After seeing children in India drinking dirty water from a stagnant pool, she decided, in her words, “to find a solution to the global water crisis.” And then she actually made some progress towards that goal, developing a solar-powered water purification system.
Kurup’s low-cost invention just won her $25,000 in The Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge–a high-stakes science competition for students in 5th to 8th grade (Kurup entered the competition before she was in high school). This was her second time entering; in 7th grade, she took first place in her state.