• Orange County Science and Engineering Fair
    • Orange County Science and Engineering Fair
    • Orange County Science and Engineering Fair
    • Orange County Science and Engineering Fair
    • Orange County Science and Engineering Fair

News & Events

OCSEF Ask-a-Scientist Nights
OCSEF Ask-a-Scientist Nights

OCSEF, OC Science, and THINK Together hosted four successful Ask-a-Scientist Nights in school across Orange County.

2016 Excellence in STEM Award Ceremony
2016 Excellence in STEM Award Ceremony

At the 2016 annual Excellence in STEM Awards ceremony, teachers, volunteers, board members, judges, and special judges received awards for their excellence.

Jan and Richard Cannon 1964
Jan and Richard Cannon 1964

Jan and Richard Cannon met at OCSEF in 1964 as fellow competitors. Little did they know that they would end up happily married in the years to follow. 

  • The Orange County Science and Engineering Fair (OCSEF) is a nonprofit educational organization that has promoted science and engineering in Orange County since 1955. The educators, scientists, and engineers who volunteer their services are committed to educating, guiding, and motivating students to engage in project-based learning in all fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) to be college and career ready in the 21st century. 

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2018 OCSEF Information
2018 OCSEF Information

Thinking of participating in the 2018 Orange County Science and Engineering Fair? Register or find out more information here!

Free Science Fair Resources
Free Science Fair Resources

Advice for conducting a science fair project, information for various science summer camps, links to science fair competitions, and more!

2015 OC Fair Imaginology
2015 OC Fair Imaginology

The OC Imaginology Fair is a great opportunity to showcase your talents in individual and group project competitions in a variety of subjects including Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math!

2016 Broadcom MASTERS Semifinalists
2016 Broadcom MASTERS Semifinalists

Of the 300 students chosen as Broadcom MASTERS semifinalists from across the nation, nine elementary and middle school students from OCSEF qualified. 

2016 California State Science Fair Winners
2016 California State Science Fair Winners

A total of 32 Orange County students from grades 6-12 won awards at the 65th annual California State Science Fair held on May 23-24.

2016 Intel ISEF Finalists Selected
2016 Intel ISEF Finalists Selected

Four high school students were selected to represent Orange County at the 2016 Intel International Science & Engineering Fair.

Melina Ghodsi was a 7th grader at Fairmont Private School in the 2015-16 school year who won 2nd place at Orange County Science and Engineering Fair in the Microbiology Category, Broadcom Masters Award at Orange County Science and Engineering Fair, and Honorable Mention in Microbiology-Medical Category at California State Science Fair for her science fair project.

 

Getting inspired for a science fair project can come from anywhere, anyone, and anything. In Melina’s case, she was inspired by her father who is a dentist, and a toothbrush. She was intrigued about the possibility of bacteria transferring from her toothbrush to her mouth each night; and with her father’s warning about keeping her teeth clean in mind, Melina just had to answer her questions: Is my toothbrush actually clean? How can I keep it clean?

 

Melina’s passion for science started when she was first exposed to the science lab in elementary school. Her science teacher, Mrs. Stephanie Conklin, was “such an encouraging teacher,” and from the time she spent with Mrs. Conklin, Melina became “a nerd for science.”

 

Originally, Melina participated in the Orange County Science and Engineering Fair because it was an assignment, like many other students in her grade. But, unlike the others, Melina chose to “take it to a new level and really have a project that has a purpose and could add something to your everyday life.” In return for her dedicated hard work and thoughtful project, Melina’s science fair journey only went uphill from there. From her school fair where she won first place in the Microbiology Category, Melina continued on her journey to win at the California State Science Fair.

 

As her advice to other aspiring scientists like her, Melina says, “If you strive high enough then you will get there. If you strive low then you will also only get so high. Strive high and make the most out of your opportunities.” It was the same case for Melina. When she first started her project, her father said, “We’re going to state, honey!” Of course Melina thought it was crazy at first, but because of her high goals and hard work, she was able to realize her hopes.

 

“I would encourage others who participate in the fair to not underestimate the amount of effort you must put into the fair,” Melina Ghodsi said. Afterall, inspiration can be just around the corner, even in the small tool used to clean bacteria off teeth.

 

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