STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: Brendan Crotty
MUSKOGEE – Cherokee Nation citizen and high school senior Brendan Crotty continues down the path of success in his studies of metalwork by placing third in the nation’s oldest and most prestigious math and science competition, the Regeneron Science Talent Search.
Crotty received third place from a pool of 2,000 entries, 375 finalists and 40 semifinalists. This year, the competition was done virtually to protect students and workers against the COVID-19 pandemic.
He “designed and built an efficient hybrid gas burner that could help reduce the ecological impact of industries like power generation and materials manufacturing,” according to societyforscience.org. “His specialized burner system operates at higher temperatures than current industrial burners yet emits 19% less polluting nitrogen dioxide gas.”
Crotty won prize money that he will use for his college education.
“The prize money, which was $150,000, is a college scholarship,” he said. “So this will allow me to basically pay for my entire college education and graduate debt free and go straight into my business and career.”
He plans to attend Missouri University of Science and Technology.
“I’m going to be studying metallurgical engineering, the study of metals and materials processing,” he said. “This all started from metalworking and blacksmithing when I was a lot younger. I want to go into metals processing and manufacturing as a career.”
In addition to his recent win, Crotty has competed and placed in several competitions over the course of his high school career, including second place in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair; second place in the Junior Science and Humanities Symposium; winning top honors in regional and state science fairs; and receiving awards from the Yale Science & Engineering Association, Ricoh Sustainable Development, the U.S. Metric Association and the Oklahoma Science Teachers Association.
“I actually started science and engineering through metalworking when I was about 11 years old. I started doing blacksmithing and welding when I was 11, and it slowly evolved into other types of metalworking, and then from there I moved into the science fair and toward engineering,” he said.