Washington – Intel Corporation ended its longtime sponsorship of the Science Talent Search, the US’s oldest and most prestigious high school science competition. Now, the Society for Science & the Public announced they are looking for a new sponsor that will assume sole title sponsorship by April 2017.

The news were confirmed on Wednesday by the Society for Science & the Public, a non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion of science by its science education programs and publications. The Society has hosted the Science Talent Search for 75 years.

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Despite the announcement, the science society said that the Science Talent Search will continue with a new sponsor, and will offer bigger prizes on the successive competitions. It has only become available for a title sponsor twice since its inception in 1942. Before Intel took over, Westinghouse Elected funded the prestigious contest for 50 years.

The Society will proceed to initiate a process to find the next best partner for the talent search. The next sponsor would have to commit to at least $6 million annually for a minimum sponsorship term of five years.

“We are thrilled for the opportunity to welcome a new sponsor as a partner – only the third in the 75-year history of the Science Talent Search – in this most special relationship. They will play an integral role in informing, educating, and inspiring students across the nation, while reaping the benefits associated with this extraordinary competition,” said Maya Ajmera, President and CEO of the Society.

Together with the sponsor, the Society annually rewards the top 300 Science Talent Search students and their schools. In 2015, the organization gave more than $1.6 million in awards, including three top prizes of $150,000.

The companies who have sponsored the competition have found that while the event have improved their corporate reputation among key influencers, it has also provided them the opportunity to raise awareness of the commitment and efforts towards education and innovation, including the major benefit of significant media coverage.

As for Intel, the tech giant haven’t explained why the desition was made. However, Shelly Esque, Vice President of Intel Corporate Affairs Group said, “Intel is proud of the legacy we have helped create around the Science Talent Search in partnership with the Society for Science & the Public.”

“When the Science Talent Search sponsorship became available in 1997, it was an opportunity we couldn’t pass up,” added Craig Barrett, former CEO and Chairman of the Board of Intel Corporation and current Society Trustee. “The Science Talent Search stands at the center of our nation’s effort to promote science and research to the next generation, and there is no doubt in my mind that it has been instrumental in encouraging the next generation of scientists, engineers and innovators.”

The Prestigious Science Talent Search

“The Science Talent Search has been identifying and celebrating the best and brightest young scientific minds in the United States for 75 years,” stated the Society for Science & the Public

The competition receives more than 1,800 applications annually from high school seniors across the US, all aiming to be selected as the the nation’s top 300 honored young scientists, from which 40 finalists are picked to compete in a week-long competition in Washington, DC.

Participants must elaborate an original research in critically important science field, which are later judged by leading experts in their fields. Commonly, the students are set to resolve some of the world’s most challenging issues with research on medical, technology and social innovations. The competition’s objective is to identify the next generation of great scientists among the high school student population of the US.

The program counts with and outstanding lineup including five National Medals of Science, three Breakthrough Prizes, twelve MacArthur Foundation Fellowships, two Fields Medals and eight Nobel prizes. Distinguished Science Talent Search alumni include Society Trustees Mary Sue Coleman (retired president, University of Michigan), Tom Leighton (co-founder and CEO, Akamai Technologies), and Frank Wilczek (2004 Nobel Prize in Physics), among others.

“The Science Talent Search is the nation’s talent pipeline for future scientists, innovators, entrepreneurs, and leaders. This one-of-a-kind program recognizes and inspires the brightest young minds in America who will benefit the world for generations to come,” said Ajmera.

About the Society

Established in 1921, the Society for Science & the public is one of the US oldest non-profit organizations. It is committed to understand and appreciate science and the vital role it plays in human development. It is globally acclaimed for their education competitions including the Intel Science Talent Search, the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, and the Broadcom MASTERS. It also includes award-winning publications, Science News and Science News for Students. The Society receives over 15 million people online annually, has more than four million followers across its social media, and recognizes more than 50,000 alumni of its competitions.

Source: Society for Science & the Public