What is LRSEF?
The Louisville Regional Science and Engineering Fair is an annual science and engineering fair held in Louisville, Kentucky. Students in grades 6-12 from 52 Kentucky counties may enter the fair.
In addition to winning trophies, cash and other awards, top Junior winners are nominated to enter the national Broadcom MASTERS competition. Top Senior winners are promoted to compete in the International Science and Engineering Fair.
The mission of the Louisville Regional Science & Engineering Fair (LRSEF) is to awaken, promote, and recognize science and engineering talent among our area’s youth and act as a catalyst to promote science and engineering throughout Kentucky.
Students in grades 6 through 12 may register for the annual LRSEF as a result of being selected as a winning project at their school or county science fairs. IF NO locally accessible fair is held, any student in public, private or home school may register directly for LRSEF with the support of their teachers.
Purpose and Counties Served
The primary purpose of LRSEF is to host an annual science and engineering fair for students in grades 6 through 12 from 52 Kentucky counties (listed below).
- Louisville Metro Region (15 counties): Anderson, Boyle, Bullitt, Hardin, Jefferson*, Larue, Marion, Meade, Mercer, Nelson, Oldham, Shelby, Spencer, Taylor and Washington.
- Southern Region (13 counties): Allen, Barren, Butler, Edmondson, Grayson, Green, Hart, Logan, Metcalf, Monroe, Simpson, Todd and Warren.
- Western Region (24 counties): Ballard, Breckinridge, Caldwell, Calloway, Carlisle, Christian, Crittenden, Daviess, Fulton, Graves, Hancock, Henderson, Hickman, Hopkins, Livingston, Lyon, Marshall, McCracken, McLean, Muhlenberg, Ohio, Trigg, Union and Webster.
* Two Jefferson County Public Magnet Schools, DuPont Manual High School and Meyzeek Middle School, host a combined affiliated fair on a different date.
LRSEF has been affiliated with Society for Science & the Public (SSP) since 1964. Competitions exist in nearly every state in the USA and in over 70 other countries and territories.
To compete in the annual International Science & Engineering Fair (ISEF) a student in grades 9-12 must first qualify by participating in a science & engineering fair affiliated with SSP and observing the International Rules for Pre-College Science Research.
The 2022 ISEF will be a hybrid event that takes place in Atlanta, Georgia, May 8-13, 2022. It will include a judged competition and distribution of awards for in-person and virtual finalists.
LRSEF is affiliated with Broadcom M.A.S.T.E.R.S. (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) a national middle school program supported by Broadcom Foundation. LRSEF is eligible to name the top 10% of their prior year total of 6th-8th grade participants as Broadcom nominees. Students enter their projects in June; 300 Semi-finalists are announced in September and 30 Finalists win a chance to compete in a week-long event in October.
LRSEF sends top winners from grades 6-12 to the Kentucky State Science & Engineering Fair at Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond. The 20th annual KY/SEF is on March 26, 2022.
LRSEF is the designated nonprofit charity partner of the APAF at GE Appliances, a Haier Company. The Asia Pacific American Forum is an affinity group of STEM professionals who provide mentoring, volunteer service, fundraising & technical assistance to the students, teachers, parents served by LRSEF.
LRSEF has a partnership with the SPOG (Science Policy Outreach Group) from University of Louisville, a dedicated group of graduate students who volunteer their time to provide STEM Outreach with LRSEF.
The LRSEF board is a group of adult volunteers with a deep passion and interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The board mobilizes over 250 volunteers each year to engage in efforts to reward and recognize Kentucky student excellence and achievement in the STEM fields. Volunteers from many STEM careers serve as judges on fair day by interviewing and giving feedback to every student on their work. Others serve as mentors for students throughout the year.
Volunteers conduct outreach activities to encourage teachers, principals and parents to get students involved. They also help recognize students and teachers by telling their stories through interviews and photography on LRSEF media. LRSEF volunteers solicit incentives for all students who enter the fair, and they seek additional funds to award winning projects.
On fair day, volunteers review all student projects for safety and compliance with ISEF standards. They assist students in registering and setting up their projects. Behind the scenes, volunteers tally results turned in by judges and prepare awards for distribution. They also plan and host an awards ceremony, which is open to parents and friends of all participants.
All participating students receive certificates. Winning projects are awarded with ribbons, trophies and cash awards. Many STEM-related professional organizations sponsor Special Awards, including cash, medals, certificates, and other special prizes.
The top three schools in both the Junior (grades 6-8) and Senior (grades 9-12) levels receive trophies and cash awards to highlight STEM achievement within the school community.
LRSEF promotes the nominated winning projects to the Kentucky Science & Engineering Fair. The top 10 percent of students in the Junior division receive invitations to enter their projects in the Broadcom MASTERS national competition.
LRSEF honors the Best of Fair Senior level winning projects with promotions to the International Science and Engineering Fair in May each year.
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