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SYFY WIRE Bad Astronomy

Scholarships Against Humanity: The card game for horrible people just awarded a full college scholarship to a young scientist

By Phil Plait

Want to hear some good news for a change?

Chances are you’ve either played Cards Against Humanity or you’ve heard of it (and if you haven’t, the levels of not-safe-for-workness there are at their not-safiest). The self-professed “party game for horrible people” has been a hugely popular geek fixture for a few years, with several expansion packs available.

One of those is the Science Pack, which has funny science-ish question and answer cards for the game. It was spearheaded by my friend Zach Weinersmith from Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal, and he asked me if I’d help create the pack along with the CAH team. Of course, I said yes, and happily, the sales have been quite good.

How good? Well, as I write this, well over a million bucks in sales have been made. Yes, a million. And the folks at CAH decided that all the money made on that pack —all of it— would go toward giving young women studying STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and/or math) full-ride college tuition scholarships.

You might want to read that sentence again. This is a very, very cool thing to do.

Last year they gave away the first scholarship. This year, there were over 2000 applicants, which is astonishing. The scholarship advisory board (made up of 60 professional STEM women) had quite the task picking one to win, but pick one they did. And that person is… Anna Barth, a high school student who wants to study physics!

Maria Ranahan and Jenn Bane from CAH gave Anna a call to let her know. You’ll want to watch this:

This makes me so happy I’m smiling all over the place. Anna’s application video was really good, about the way the moon Io is heated internally by Jupiter’s gravity. It’s not just what she said (which was great) but also how she put it together. See for yourself:

I’m so proud of all this! It’s not often a good laugh with creative friends can turn into something that can do so much good. My thanks to the scholarship advisory board for their hard work in making a difficult choice, and congratulations to Anna, and to the runners-up Cameron King and Queenster MacCarthy who received $2500 and $1000 scholarships as well!

Applications for next year will open in the fall. Bookmark the page!

Image Credit: Cards Against Humanity / Shutterstock / Likoper

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