newheader_sciencefair_2015WASHINGTON (Diya TV) — President Obama sung the praises of two young Indian-American high school students for their innovative ideas and trendsetting thinking, which he said would help serve the global community.

Maya Varma from San Jose, and Anarudh Ganesan from Maryland qualified for the sixth annual White House Science Fair after emerging victorious from a number of other science competitions.

“All of you are showing the rest of us that it’s never too early in life to make a difference,” Obama said in his remarks after interacting with the students who had come from across the country.

“You teach us about the power of reason and logic, and trying things and figuring out whether they work, and if they don’t, learning from that and trying something new. And you remind us that, together, through science, we can tackle some of the biggest challenges that we face,” he added.

Varma’s invention garnered her finalist status at the 2016 Intel STS competition, where her spirometer was selected as one of the top 40 projects in the nation.

“Maya is using a low-cost microcontroller, software freely available on the Internet, and a smartphone, and she designed a tool that allows people with asthma and other lung diseases to diagnose and monitor their own symptoms,” Obama said.

The president soon arrived at the achievements of the 16-year-old Ganesan, who became inspired after making a trek with his grandparents for medicine one day. They’re vaccinations weren’t available on arrival.


“When Anarudh was little, his grandparents walked him 10 miles to a remote clinic in his native India for vaccinations, only to find out that the vaccines had spoiled in the heat,” Obama said to the assembled crowd. “Though he eventually got the shots that he needed, he thought, well, this is a problem, and wanted to prevent other children from facing the same risk.”

“So he developed what he calls the VAXXWAGON, and it’s a refrigerator on wheels that transports vaccines to remote destinations. That’s the kind of innovation and compassion that we’re seeing from so many of these young people,” Obama said.

Ganesan was named a finalist of the 2015 Google Science Fair.