The 2018 Ozarks Science and
Engineering Fair will be held March
27, 28, and 29, 2018, at Hammons Student Center
on the Missouri State University
Ozarks Science and Engineering Fair Mission
The Mission of OSEF is to:
- Encourage independent student research in
science and engineering
- Promote the understanding and appreciation
- Stimulate interest and support for science
and math programs in area schools
- Promote and encourage scientific thinking
- Provide a public event to display and
recognize area students' research
- Illustrate that science is a creative human
- Encourage youth to pursue science, math, or
- Promote collaboration and interaction
between area students and scientists and
engineers from the community and/or the world
What is OSEF?
The Ozarks Science and Engineering Fair (OSEF) is
a regional competition which brings together student
scientists and engineers with outstanding research
projects. It also serves as an excellent opportunity
for students to experience working with local
scientists and professionals. Participating students
are from a 16 county region that includes Christian,
Dallas, Douglas, Greene, Howell, Laclede, Oregon,
Ozark, Polk, Pulaski, Shannon, Stone, Taney, Texas,
Webster, and Wright counties.
Facts and History
- 1959: The first organized
Science Fair In Springfield,
Missouri was held at Parkview High
School. Early Fairs' expenses were
covered by $400 donated by the
Springfield School System and the
Springfield Rotary Club
- 1990: Joplin, Missouri becomes
the site of the second Regional
Science Fair, thereby providing more
opportunities for local students to
attend the International Science and
- 1990: The Greater Springfield
Area Science Fair Foundation was
formed to manage and administer the
Greater Springfield Area Science
- 1992: A new name, Ozarks Science
and Engineering Fair, is adopted by
the Fair's foundation to more
accurately reflect the mission of
- 2003: An expanded region! Due to
the dissolution of the South Central
Missouri Science and Engineering
Fair, the additional counties of
Pulaski, Laclede, Texas, Shannon,
Ozark, Howell, Wright, and Oregon
were added to our region, while the
counties of Dade and Cedar were
moved to the Missouri Southern
Science & Engineering Fair, for a
total of 16 counties.
Did you know that . . .
- an average of 750 students from
the 16 county region surrounding
Springfield participate in the
Ozarks Science and Engineering Fair.
- over 400 awards, prizes, and
scholarships totaling nearly $50,000
are offered each year to students in
the Junior and Senior divisions.
- over 150 area professionals
donate their time and expertise to
judge exhibits in 13 categories.
- approximately 24 professionals
from 15 disciplines volunteer their
time to act as mentors to Science
- the Ozarks Science and
Engineering Fair sends the two
Senior Grand Prize Winners to the
International Science and
Engineering Fair (ISEF). The 2015
Intel ISEF competition was held in
Who participates in OSEF?
There are three (3) divisions of exhibition for
- Elementary Division: Students in grades
3 - 5 display their projects in this
noncompetitive portion of the Fair.
- Junior Division: Students in grades 6 -
8 compete for recognition and awards.
- Senior Division: Students in grades 9 -
12 compete for recognition, scholarships,
and cash awards. Two Senior Division
students are selected to compete at the
International Science and Engineering Fair.
When does OSEF Take place?
OSEF is an annual event which takes place over three (3)
days during the first part of April. This year's fair dates
are April 5 - 7, 2016.
- On the first day, students set up their
exhibits between 3:00 and 6:00 pm. Student
must be with their projects from 6:30 to
8:30 pm on the first day for judging and are
expected to discuss their research with the
judges when asked.
- During the second day, called "Science
Day," the Fair is open to the public.
Hundreds of visitors, including entire
classes from area schools, come to see the
- The final day of the Fair is also open
to the public. The Award Ceremony is held
that evening, at which time students finally
learn what placement or special awards they
Where is OSEF held?
- Students' research projects are
displayed at Hammons Student Center on the
Missouri State University campus.
Why do students participate in OSEF?
Here are some words from previous participants and
additional reasons to participate:
- "I have found the business and community
involvement to be extraordinary . . . .
Sponsors are providing encouragement and
support for students who pursue the
sciences." Karen Kindall, First Place
Behavioral Sciences, Grand Prize Recipient,
Strafford High School
- "The Science Fair is an exciting
opportunity to create, develop, and complete
a project . . . . Being judged by an expert
in your field . . .is a tremendous
first-hand experience." Tim Noonan, First
Place Zoology, Grand Prize Recipient,
Springfield Catholic High School
- Students participating in OSEF also have
the unique opportunity to develop working
relationships with mentors outside of their
classroom environment. Placement and Special
Award winners receive prizes that include
cash awards and scholarships. Participation
also provides valuable additional material
for college and scholarship applications and
- Placement and Special Award winners have
their names, as well as the names of their
sponsors, schools, and projects, published
in the Annual Award Book, as well as on the
How is OSEF funded?
- Funds come exclusively from
contributions by individuals, organizations,
foundations, businesses, and industries
within our region. These funds are used for
operational costs, awards and expenses for
participation in the Intel International
Science and Engineering Fair. There, our
students interact and compete with student
scientists from all over the world!