Young Brisbane Scientist competing with the best of the best

Brisbane’s own teen genius Jackson Huang will be representing Australia at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF) in Pennsylvania this month.

Jackson is heading to the internationally-recognised event after he placed first in the investigations category at this year’s BHP Billiton Science and Engineering Awards.

“I’m very excited to meet other young scientists from around the world who are also passionate about finding solutions to real-world problems.

“I am looking forward to seeing other amazing projects and also the opportunity to travel to the United States for my first time,” Jackson said.

When he was just 15 years old Jackson was named the International Brain Bee Champion for his knowledge of neurology.

And at 17 he won the top prize at the BHP Billiton Science and Engineering Awards for cracking a 30-year mystery about how chemicals in different heartburn drugs can reduce their effectiveness.

It was his work on this project that provided him the opportunity to compete at Intel ISEF in America from 10 to 15 May.

“Winning the BHP Billiton Science and Engineering Award gave me a big confidence boost. It told me that I have the ability to do good research and made me more confident about my decision to pursue a career in scientific research,” he said.

With a perfect score, Jackson graduated as DUX of his year from Queensland Academy for Science, Mathematics and Technology at the end of 2014.

Although he’s taking a much-needed gap year this year he plans to go to university and study science next year. He should have no trouble getting into a university of his choice with the marks he received.

Jackson will be one of only eight Australian students attending the event but they’ll be joined by around 1800 other high school students from around the globe presenting their research projects to compete for a range of awards and scholarships.

It’s not easy to get a spot at this event – around 7 million students from all over the world participate in local science competitions for a chance to attend.

The BHP Billiton Science and Engineering Awards is one of the only Australian competitions that give students the chance to present at Intel ISEF.

To be in the running, you can enter the BHP Billiton Science and Engineering Awards by participating in a state-based science teacher association contest or CSIRO’s CREST Awards.

The BHP Billiton Science and Engineering Awards are Australia’s most prestigious school science awards and are a partnership between BHP Billiton, CSIRO and the Australian Science Teachers Association (ASTA).

Intel Australia is also a supporter of the awards and assists financially for the winning Australian students to attend Intel ISEF every year.