Narendra Tallapragada, 17, Preya Shah, 17, and Nilesh Tripuraneni, 18, did America proud, placing fourth, eighth, and ninth respectively at the Intel Science Search, the country's most prestigious pre-college science competition, often dubbed the 'Junior Nobel' prize in science.
When the top 10 winners were announced at the black-tie gala banquet at the Andrew W Mellon Auditorium in downtown Washington, DC, a back to back first place win for Indian Americans -- after Shivani Sud from Durham, North Carolina won last year -- was not to be. But there were eight Indian Americans, the highest number ever, among the 40 finalists this year. That Indian Americans -- who make up less than 1 percent of America's population -- constituted 20 percent of the finalists underscored Indian children's dominance as the best and the brightest. With the more than 13 other finalists of Asian origin, that translates to over 50 percent of top young science minds from a population that is hardly 5 percent of the United States population.
Nilesh, of Fresno, California, also received a $20,000 scholarship, for formulating a set of hydrodynamic equations that may provide a potential method to better understand the first movements of the universe and could aid in the development of a quantum theory of gravity