PARKLAND, FL- Zoe Weissman won the $10,000 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for Health Advancement in the Broadcom MASTERS. The award recognizes the student whose work and performance shows the most promise in health-related fields and demonstrates an understanding of the many social factors that affect health.

The 14-year-old Parkland resident and American Heritage Weissman's science project involved her findings of how men and women perceive pain differently and the gap between medicines geared for men versus women. Weissman learned that the majority of test subjects in pain perception clinical trials are male and as a result more pain medications are geared towards men. Weissman worked to identify natural alternatives to opioids to help both male and females with pain control.

Broadcom MASTERS is considered one of the nation's premier middle school STEM competitions. The top 10% of students at the 6th, 7th, and 8th grade affiliated science fairs were eligible to enter into the Broadcom MASTERS competition. The top 300 entrants were chosen in September, and the final 30 were selected to showcase their projects during finals week in October.

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The winners were chosen from the 30 finalists selected from 3,476 applicants in 42 states and Puerto Rico. According to Broadcom MASTERS winners were selected by a panel of distinguished scientists, engineers and educators.

"Being in the top 5 is such an honor. I still can't believe I am among the top 5 science students in the country. I am so grateful for this opportunity and all the amazing people I became friends with along the way!" shared Weissman. 

Weissman was award $10,000 for placing in the top 5 and winning the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for Health Advancement. The money will be put towards Weissman's college fund. Broadcom MASTERS program will also reward $1,000 to Weissman's school to benefit their STEM initiatives.

The future is bright for Weissman as she plans to continue her work in the science field. 

 "In the future, I'd love to work in a university level lab over the summer, preferably combining 3 of my passions: medicine, chemistry, and computer science," added Weissman. 

For a full list of the winners, visit here.


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