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Gitanjali Rao      

Inventor, TIME Magazine's First Ever "Kid of the Year" in 2020, Young Scientist Challenge Winner, Recipient of the United States Environmental Protection Agency President’s Environmental Youth Award

Gitanjali Rao is an inventor, an aspiring scientist, author, speaker and an active promoter of STEM around the world. She was recognized as America's Top Young Scientist and was a recipient of an EPA Presidential award for her patented invention of an innovative lead contamination detection tool. Rao is also the inventor of “Epione”—a device for early diagnosis of prescription opioid addiction using genetic engineering, and "Kindly"—an anti-cyberbullying service using AI and Natural Language processing.

She was honored as Forbes “30 Under 30 in Science” in 2019 and TIME’s “Top Young Innovator” and "TIME Kid of the Year" for her innovations and STEM workshops she conducts globally, which has inspired over 76,500 students in the last three years across six continents and 46 countries.

Rao is the author of the book "Young Innovator's Guide to STEM", available in 6 languages, which guides students, educators, or teachers through a self-developed prescriptive 5 step innovation process. She was appointed as a UNICEF Youth Advocate 2021 for using science for solving social problems such as cyber-bullying and developing solutions for environmental protection and recently received the Muhammed Ali Humanitarian award for her selfless service for the refugee camp students.

Now a first-year student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Rao was honored at the first Girls Leading Change celebration held at the White House on October 11, 2023.

Speech Topics

A Young Innovator's Journey Using Science & Technology as a Catalyst for Social Change

Gitanjali will share her journey, some of her recognized innovations, her process of innovation, the importance of organization's support in opening up their doors and a call to action where each one of us can help make a difference in society.


MIT First-year Gitanjali Rao Honored at White House’s “Girls Leading Change” Celebration
MIT first-year student Gitanjali Rao was honored at the first Girls Leading Change celebration held at the White House on October 11, 2023, which is also the International Day of the Girl. Fifteen young women were selected by the White House Gender Policy Council for their work as leaders, entrepreneurs, scientists, educators, authors, climate change activists, and health care advocates. Dr. Jill Biden recognized the group at the celebration and thanked them for their hard work, achievements, and strides toward making positive change in their communities and across the country.
Gitanjali Rao To Be Honored With Locarno Kids Award - Variety
May 31, 2022 ... Indian filmmaker Gitanjali Rao will be the recipient of the Locarno Kids Award la Mobiliare, the Locarno Film Festival award dedicated to personalities ...
TIME's Kid of the Year Gitanjali Rao is an inventor and scientist ...
TIME's first ever "Kid of the Year," 15-year-old Gitanjali Rao, created a device to detect lead in drinking water. She talks to CNN's Julia Chatterley about her work  ...
Student scientist and inventor Gitanjali Rao is Time Magazine's first ...
Student scientist and inventor Gitanjali Rao is Time Magazine's first 'Kid of the Year'. The water crisis in Flint, Michigan, inspired her to develop a way to detect ...
Gitanjali Rao Named 'Time' Magazine's Kid Of The Year : NPR
Gitanjali Rao, a Colorado teenager who invented a mobile device to test for lead in drinking water, is Time's Kid of the Year for 2020. The magazine announced ...
TIME's 2020 Kid of the Year: Meet Gitanjali Rao | Time
AJ: When you're not doing all of these amazing things—because I feel like I'm speaking to a 60-year-old scientist in Geneva—what do you do that's just a 15- year- ...

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