CWEA Awards Stockholm Junior Water Prizes to Three California Students


CWEA recently selected Shloka Janapaty of San Jose to represent the state of California at the Stockholm Junior Water Prize competition for the project titled, A Novel, Fast, Low-Cost Approach to Achieve Near 100% LDPE Degradation and Leachate Remediation: Phanerochaete chrysosporium Landfill Bioremediation.

Shloka’s project was selected as the first place project for California out of 19 papers submitted. Shloka Janapaty, one of 53 state winners announced by the Water Environment Federation (WEF), represented California in the national finals June 13-16, 2019 at The Ohio State University.

The competition is open to public, private, or independent high school students in grades 9-12, that have reached the age of 15 by Aug. 1 of the competition year, and have conducted water-related science projects.  Judging criteria are the same as the international competition and include ratings for relevance, methodology, subject knowledge, practical skills, creativity and paper/presentation.

The Stockholm Junior Water Prize aims to increase students’ interest in water issues, research, and careers, as well as to raise awareness about global water challenges. The competition is open to projects focused on improving water quality, water resource management, water protection, and drinking water and wastewater treatment.

“These are some of our country’s most intelligent students, and the innovation and creativity reflected in their projects is truly amazing,” said Eileen O’Neill, past WEF Executive Director. “If the work of these young scientists is any indication, the future of water science and research is indeed bright.”

CWEA also awards the second and third place winners with cash prizes. Congratulations to:

Second Place: Eshani Jha for the project titled, A Novel and Affordable Water Filtration System for Complete Removal of Heavy Metals.

Third Place: Shreya Ramachandran for the project titled, Water Recycling: The Effects of Soap Nut Grey Water on the Environment.

Sonja Michaluk (New Jersey) was selected as the 2019 U.S. Stockholm Junior Water Prize winner for her project, A Novel Method of Monitoring the Health of our Global Fresh Water Supply using DNA Barcoding of Chironomidae (Diptera). Sonja received a $10,000 scholarship and an all-expenses paid trip to Stockholm, Sweden to represent the U.S. at the 2019 SJWP international competition. Sonja received $10,000 and an all-expenses-paid trip to Stockholm to represent the United States at the international competition during World Water Week on August 26-31.

The Stockholm Junior Water Prize (SJWP) is considered the world’s most prestigious award presented to a high school student for a water-research project. The Water Environment Federation (WEF) has coordinated the U.S. competition since its inception in 1997, and partners closely with their Member Association (MA) to execute the program.

Initially a paper competition from 1997-2001, the eligible projects were gleaned from the regional and state international Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) by Member Association (MA) appointed judges. In 2002, the MAs sent their state winners to the first onsite event that was jointly hosted in Dallas, TX by WEF and the Water Environment Association of Texas. The event was modeled after the international event, including three days of competition and social activities, and up until 2013, was the U.S. model.

For more information on the Stockholm Junior Water Prize:

For a list of state winners: