Fort McMurray Teen Explains Quantum Tunneling and Wins $250k Scholarship

A teenager from Canada has just taken first place in a global science competition; thanks for her excellent…
Fort McMurray Teen Explains Quantum Tunneling and Wins $250k Scholarship

A teenager from Canada has just taken first place in a global science competition; thanks for her excellent quantum tunneling explanation.

Maryam Tsegaye, who resides in Fort McMurray; this city hit headlines for the wrong reasons back in 2016, when 88,000 people had to flee their homes as a result of wildfire.

Now, thanks to her ability to explain tricky quantum physics theory with ease, this 17-year-old has taken top prize at the sixth annual international Breakthrough Junior Challenge. This is a science video competition where young people can show their knowledge of scientific principles in various fields.

Also read: Last-Minute City Council Decision Saves Toronto’s Oldest Tree

In her three-minute explainer, Maryam likened electrons’ behavior to how her brother cheats while playing games online. In her video, she said:

So I was watching my brother play this video game and he used a cheat code that let his character do a walk-through-walls hack. He pushed himself against a barrier in the game, hit some buttons and boom, his character appeared on the other side. Imagine if you could walk through walls in real life—and it turns out you can, at a quantum level.

Maryam Tsegaye

Alberta politician Rachel Notley spoke for many when she tweeted her congratulations to the teen.

Maryam with her quantum tunneling explanation claimed first spot out of more than 5,600 applicants from 124 different countries. She won a $250,000 Post-secondary scholarship; her science teacher was not left out as $50,000 prize was given, while her school was given a $100,000 science lab.

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