Hot Science Summer


The SeRCH Foundation, Inc. hosted by VanguardSTEM is giving away $50,000 to seed research projects launched by our #VSVillage: Black, Indigenous, women of color, non-binary people of color, and marginalized communities of all gender identities who are interested in STEM. Do YOUR science during Hot Science Summer!

The Projects

Browse the participating projects

Can skin care formulations address dark skin?

Those with chronic skin conditions are 2-6 times more likely to experience anxiety, depression, and physical...

How can complex systems research protect child farmworkers?

In the United States, 1 child dies of injuries sustained during farm work every 3 days. Protective social...

Can a method be developed to study sea turtle nest sex ratios on a large-scale?

When a sea turtle hatches, it is impossible to identify their sex because they don’t have any sex-specific...

Home is where evolved stars live

Stars end their lives forming beautiful nebulae. On the way towards illuminating nebulae, many of them enter...

Will politically driven STEM education strengthen migrant youth’s relation to science?

Just Science For [You]th is a political education program for refugee teenagers in Cleveland, Ohio about...

What can cephalopods teach us about spatial memory and learning?

Cephalopods and vertebrates have gone through similar circumstances that required adaptations such as learning...

Can lead and limestone contamination of soil and water in mine sites affect agronomic productivity and inhabitants?

The research studies the soil and water metrics of solid minerals in two major mining sites( lead mine at...

More About This Challenge

The sciency details

Challenge Amount:
Submission Deadline:
Jun 28, 2021
Campaign Launch:
Jul 14, 2021

Frequently Asked Questions

How do challenge grants work?

This grant is for projects that launch crowdfunding campaigns by Jun 25, 2021. Eligible projects must be approved before the launch deadline.

When will the grant be awarded?

On July 31st at 5PM PT, the prizes will be awarded according to the posted schedule.

Can I still submit a project?

We are no longer accepting projects for this grant, however we will be launching many more challenge grant opportunities. Sign up for our mailing list for up-to-date community news.

Please Note:

If we see suspicious acitivity of researchers or backers potentially cheating during the challenge, the project will be completely disqualified from winning the grant.

Challenge Aims

The Hot Science Summer initiative is specially designed to catalyze your ability to do YOUR science. Just as you are. With your community. Right now.

Who’s in the Hot Science Set?

We asked anyone with questions about the way the world works to launch a project.
Members of the Hot Science Set were not required to have a specific degree or
qualifications other than the ability to answer the questions they posed –– we call these folks “STEM creatives”! No one has all of the answers worked out before they start, and anyone can be a STEM creative. We just want to encourage you to do YOUR

We here at the SeRCH Foundation and VanguardSTEM live and breathe STEM identity
and the ability to fully express yourself as a scientist, on your own terms. As such, the
members of our Hot Science Set were asked to explicitly describe how their project
uses the intersectional scientific methodology. Check out the “Additional Info” section of
the projects in the Hot Science Set to learn about what motivates each of the STEM
creatives we’re supporting this summer.

Since this is a pilot project, we will not be able to financially boost every project
submitted as part of Hot Science Summer. We’re working hard to get the word out
across all of our networks, but if you found your way to this page YOU can support the
BIPOC STEM creatives in the Hot Science by donating to any of the projects above or
sharing them on social media and within your networks.

About The SeRCH Foundation, Inc and VanguardSTEM

SeRCH is a non-profit that uses STEM as a tool for social justice and is the parent non-profit for VanguardSTEM. VanguardSTEM is our signature program and is hosting Hot Science Summer for our #VSVillage and all who want to be a part of our Hot Science Set!  You know we STAY looking for ways to create yummy goodness, direct from the hyperspace.

Project Eligilibity

All members of the #VSVillage, which includes Black, Indigenous, women of color and non-binary people of color in STEM, and marginalized communities of all gender identities who are interested in STEM. Advocates of the #VSVillage are also encouraged to apply. Hot Science Summer is open to all interested researchers, subject to the above eligibility criterion. You must be 18 years of age or older to create a project. Those under 18 can still participate if they have parent(s), legal guardian(s) and/or meaningful other(s) above 18 to manage the project and sign the grant paperwork, if funding is awarded. If this applies to you, please make this clear in your project description. Read carefully: Please note that you must address the ISM question in the additional information section (along with the other criterion listed above) in order to qualify for a financial boost from the SeRCH Foundation.

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