The Department of Physics is committed to encouraging high school students to be involved in science fair projects involving principles of physics. Several of our faculty have mentored high school students over the summers and also during the academic year to help students follow their passion for scientific inquiry within a research project. 
In addition to our faculty volunteering to judge and be mentors, we have been providing a special physics award at the Regional Intel Science and Engineering Fair held at UNC Charlotte each spring since 2016. 

Physics Award Description:

Third, second and first place awards for outstanding physics research for $25, $50 and $100 are annually sponsored by the Department of Physics and Optical Science at UNC Charlotte. The awards are granted to high school students with outstanding research in any topic of investigation that substantially employ principles of physics. Consideration of creativity and imagination, experimental design, quantitative analysis, rigorous scientific inquiry and verbal demonstration of understanding of why the results work out the way they do are evaluated. 

Winners of 2017:

First place went to a team of three students who built a Muon detector from scratch (three young men to the left). Second place went to a young man (on the far right) who built a fully operational plasma chamber. Third place went to a young woman who built a robotic ball launcher to investigate the dynamics of trajectories based on the impulse on the ball through momentum transfer (not present in the picture).