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Of course, teams from different regions of the country have made their way in and out of the top 10, some with more success than others.
Newly minted graduates Miles Dunn, Gabe Garcia, Griffin Gensheimer, and Bri Stanley competed against champion teams from more than 40 states and abroad including Australia, Hong Kong, India, South Korea, New Zealand, Portugal, Singapore, Thailand, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.
The teams were asked to consider the future of energy, and specifically the limitations of emerging renewable energy sources using the concept of biomimicry.
The students proposed several solutions, including space-based solar energy, piezoelectricity plates, photovoltaic paint, nuclear fusion, predictive analytics, carbon-nanotube batteries, and mobile aquatic trees.
Their insights earned them the title of best high school problem-solving team in the world.
After a stellar performance in 2017 – three top ten placements and two of the three highest point totals, expectations will be high for Kentucky’s problem solvers in 2018.
Though most people might point to Kentucky for its history of coal and bourbon, the state should also be recognized as a leading producer of amazing teams of young problem-solvers.
The Future Problem Solving Program International’s Global Finals gives the next generation of critical thinkers a chance to test their skill at solving all kinds of challenges.
Students from around the world are presented with the daunting task of solving future problems ranging from desertification to the treatment of animals to artificial intelligence. Each team works out a proposed solution to the challenge, which they pit against the others in a bid for the title of top problem-solver. Over the last four years of the competition, one state has far out-paced all others in their ability to produce great problem solvers. We looked at all the results from the Senior Division of the competition (high school level) and analyzed the teams placing in the top 10 each year.
Not only that, they had more than twice as many as the next contender (Minnesota).
While not always taking the top spot, the Bluegrass State consistently lands between 2 and 3 schools among the top 10 finalists each year – and it’s not even close!