Film Type: Documentary

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Whiz Kids

Storyline

At a time when American teens lag far behind other countries in math and science, WHIZ KIDS is a coming-of-age documentary that tells the story of three remarkably different yet equally passionate 17-year-old scientists who vie to compete in the nation’s oldest, most prestigious science competition. Win or lose, these ‘whiz kids’ raise questions about class, courage, personal sacrifice, success and failure, and in the process, learn as much about themselves as they do about science.

 

 

Ana Cisneros attends an all minority high school in New York City where she learns how to manipulate the chemicals in plant root systems as part of a four-year research project. Ana received a fellowship to complete a prestigious botany internship at Colorado State University to help further her research and make her competitive at the Intel Science Talent Search. (Courtesy Sandbar Pictures).

Pakastani-born Harmain Khan commutes four hours a day to complete his project on fossilized crocodile teeth. Raised by a single mom in an impoverished household, Harmain’s need to prove himself to the world is ferocious and pushes him to compete for a spot in the prestigious Intel Science Talent Search. (Courtesy Sandbar Pictures)

West Virginian Kelydra Welcker discovered a simple method for testing and removing a toxic chemical that has been dumped in the Ohio River by local industry for over 40 years. Although her work places her in an uncomfortable spotlight locally, she fights for a spot in the prestigious Intel Science Talent Search. (Courtesy Sandbar Pictures)

A stage full of WHIZ KIDS, America’s top 40 young scientists at the Intel Science Talent Search in Washington, D.C.

The three subjects from WHIZ KIDS, Harmain Khan, Ana Cisneros, and Kelydra Welcker at San Francisco’s Herbst Theatre for a benefit screening of the film. (Courtesy San Francisco Exploratorium)

The three subjects from WHIZ KIDS, Harmain Khan, Ana Cisneros, and Kelydra Welcker take the stage at San Francisco’s Herbst Theatre for a benefit screening of the film. (Courtesy San Francisco Exploratorium)

WHIZ KIDS creative collaborators Tom Shepard (Director), Tina DiFeliciantonio (Co-Director/Co-Producer) and Jane C. Wagner (Editor and Writer)

Trailer