TIME Kid of the Year 2020 - Gitanjali Rao

The Indian American, Gitanjali Rao became the first-ever Kid of the Year 2020 by TIME Magazine. This 15-year-old scientist and inventor was awarded for her contribution to the field of technology. 

Gitanjali Rao’s invention of the application to detect cyberbullying and the device to identify lead in drinking water matched the barometer to acknowledge the rising leaders of America’s youngest generation, as required by TIME. 

All UPSC and Government exam aspirants must read about the success story of this young inspirational scientist and get motivated to work for the betterment and development of the society and people around. 

Gitanjali Rao

  • Gitanjali Rao is a 15-year-old student scientist from Denver, Colorado
  • She is of Indian origin and is living in America
  • She was chosen among the 5000 US-based nominees for the TIME Magazine’s Kid of the Year Award 2020 and became the first-ever winner for the same
  • Since a very young age her interest in developing technology through the medium of new and innovative devices and applications has been praise-worthy
  • In her 7th grade, she created a device, named Tethys, which could detect lead components in water using carbon nanotubes. She had also won the 2017 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge for this invention of hers
  • She has also been successful in creating an application and chrome extension, named Kindly, which can detect cyberbullying through means of artificial intelligence
  • In 2019, she had also appeared on Ted Talks: Nayi Baat, hosted by Shar Rukh Khan
  • Gitanjali Rao was also included in the Forbes list 2019 for ‘30 under 30’
  • She has also introduced a device called Epione which can detect addiction or overuse of prescribed drugs by Physicians

Candidates can also get the List of Firsts in India at the linked article and learn more about the achievements of Indians in various fields across the country.

About TIME Kid of the Year 

  • Close to over a century, TIME has been naming the Person of the Year, but for the first time, the magazine had decided to name the Kid of the Year in 2020
  • Only kids between the age of 8 to 16 years were eligible for this award
  • The TIME Magazine partnered with Nickelodeon in 2020 to recognise the rising young talent of the US and chose the most influential kids whose small initiatives led to big changes
  • The panellists to judge the entries included representatives from the Special Olympics and Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, USA. Apart from this, Nickelodeon young stars and TIME kids reporters were also a part of the shortlisting committee 

Finalists & Awards for TIME’s Kid of the Year 2020

Over 5000 students had applied for their nomination under the TIME Kid of the Year 2020. All these kids had left a positive impact over the society is some or the other manner and after multiple stages of shortlisting, 5 finalists were selected:

  • Gitanjali Rao, Denver
  • Tyler Gordon, San Jose
    • Winner of Global Child Prodigy Award 2020, Tyler has speech and hearing deficiency and chose painting as his voice
    • His paintings and portraits of Black inspirational icons has won him many titles and awards over the years
    • He used his painting skills to spread awareness about the Balck Lives Matter campaign as well
  • Jordan Reeves, Columbia
    • She created a 3-D-printable prosthesis for kids that shoots out biodegradable sparkles
    • With an aim empower those with disabilities she founded a non-profit organisation, named Born Just Right, to celebrate kids with physical disabilities and help them come up with their own solutions
  • Bellen Woodard, Leesburg
    • She is said to be the world’s first crayon activist who designed crayons based on the skin colours she sees in the world
    • She intends to break the racial stereotypes
  • Ian McKenna, Austin
    • His Giving Garden project has helped hundreds of needy people get free vegetables for food
    • He has set up a garden in his school where he grows vegetables which are free for anyone in need to grab
    • Through his initiative, he even helped people during the pandemic time of COVID

Also, to get the latest current affairs or news across the globe, candidates can visit the linked article. 

As far as the winning prize award or reward is considered:

  • The top 20 Semi-Finalists were given a one hundred dollar gift card
  • The five finalists were given a $5,000 cheque and the designation of Kid reporter for one year
  • The winner, Gitanjali Rao received $125 and a framed TIME magazine cover of their choice

The success story of each of these young achievers is inspiring and helpful for aspirants in India looking forward to joining the Administrative Services and working for the people and society. 

For any further information, assistance or help, candidates can visit BYJU’S. 

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