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4-H Canada Youth to appear at Canada-Wide Science Fair

Two finalists from 4-H have earned their way to the prestigious 2024 Canada-Wide Science Fair (CWSF).

Following a virtual round in January, the second round of the 4-H Canada Science Fair was hosted by Olds College of Agriculture and Technology in Olds, Alta. from Feb. 28 to March 3.

Eight participants presented their projects hoping to move on to the CWSF, the country’s largest annual youth science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) event.

4-H Canada Interim CEO Hugh Maynard said Mark Norregaard of Balzac, Alta. and Nia Smith from Brandon, Man. were declared the winners.

“I’d like to extend sincere congratulations to Mark and Nia on advancing to the CWSF,” Maynard said. “It’s always exciting to see the innovation and creativity youth apply to real-life challenges in the world of STEM, and we’re very proud to offer opportunities where our 4-H youth leaders can effect positive change in the world around them.”

Norregaard, 17, is no stranger to the 4-H Canada Science Fair. This was the fifth time he was a finalist. This year, he compared the response between vaccinated and nonvaccinated calves before grass and weaning time. His project was inspired by the desire to help decrease outbreaks of Bovine Respiratory Disease in calf populations.

Nia Smith earned her spot at the Canada-Wide Science Fair with her project “Seed Starting for a Home Hydroponic System.” Making her debut at the 4-H Canada Science Fair, the 14-year-old was inspired to create a more successful home hydroponic system. Her project compared four different mediums for starting seeds and provided findings on which medium works best for a hydroponic system to achieve the highest germination rate.

Ashley Smith, Market Manager for Crop Protection at Bayer Crop Science Canada said it was an honour to be a judge at this year’s science fair.

“Both Mark and Nia demonstrated tremendous leadership and innovation for the future of food production. Through STEM opportunities like this, we get a first-hand glimpse into the next generation of scientists, policy contributors, engineers, and visionary catalysts in agriculture,” Smith said.

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