ThinkQuest 2000 Internet Challenge:

In the summer of 2000, I worked on a three person team to develop the educational website called Dinosaur Treks. Our team was comprised of Megan Shimota, Laura Eckstein, and myself. We were coached by Mr. T.J. Fletcher and Mr. Josh Barnd. In October 2000, our team was named a finalist in the ThinkQuest 2000 Internet Challenge, a non-profit program that matches teens with peers from around the world to design educational websites. Our team was selected from an international pool of more than 6,800 students from 85 countries; only 70 students were chosen as finalists in 2000's Internet Challenge.

"The ThinkQuest Internet Challenge unites students from around the globe regardless of computer expertise - whether from inner-cities, suburban communities, or rural villages - in their dedicated initiative to create these wonderful educational tools that are used by millions," marvels Dr. Terry Rogers, president and CEO of Advanced Network & Services, the non-profit corporation that founded ThinkQuest. "With over 50,000 students having completed the ThinkQuest journey to date, we are working to include 1 million participants, worldwide, over the next five years."

The annual ThinkQuest Internet Challenge invites teams of students ages 12 to 19 to work together to create an interactive, well-researched website on an educational topic of interest to them. Most teammates, who have never met in-person, use the Internet to complete their entries by coordinating their workloads to accommodate the members' diverse schedules, language differences, and divergent time zones.

The teams work for more than eight months to gather data, conduct research, and learn about the Internet as an educational medium as they build educationally rich sites. Upon completion, the student-created entries become a permanent part of the ThinkQuest Library, which is made freely available to teachers, students, and Internet users across the globe. These Web sites are found in the ThinkQuest Library at, the most heavily trafficked educational destination on the Internet with an estimated 120 million hits, and 2.5 million unique users, per month.

A panel of experts from the Internet Society conducts judging for the ThinkQuest Website entries, looking for compelling and accurate educational content, technical excellence, interactivity, and imaginative use of graphics. In addition, teams are assessed on how well members collaborate by sharing their individual knowledge, skills, and efforts. Students participating in the ThinkQuest programs learn invaluable skills, whether they are in grade school, college-bound, or heading for a vocational career. Acquiring skills such as time and project management, and technical expertise, some ThinkQuest participants start their own businesses while still in high school, and contest winners use awards to pay for college tuition. The challenge encourages collaboration, leadership, and critical thinking and helps raise students' self-esteem, along with their technological skills. President Clinton cited ThinkQuest as a good example of a non-profit program helping to bridge the digital divide.


"ARMONK, NY-ThinkQuest® today announced that it will be holding its ThinkQuest 2000 Internet Challenge finalist judging and celebration at the birthplace of the World Wide Web, the world famous CERN, The European Laboratory for Particle Physics, in Geneva, Switzerland. More than 120 students and coaches from around the world -from as far away as India, Ireland, and Iowa - will be attending the weekend event on March 17 - 19, 2001. ThinkQuest's Internet-based programs ( are free to enter, and recognize winning students, coaches, and schools with scholarships and cash awards.

"Our ThinkQuest finalists have produced and contributed their entries to the global Internet community, and it is fitting that their efforts be rewarded at the very place where the World Wide Web began," states Dr. Terry Rogers, CEO and president of Advanced Network & Services, the non-profit corporation that founded ThinkQuest. "We hope that their creativity and inventiveness will inspire other teens to join the ThinkQuest revolution. In fact, we expect to increase participation to one million students by year 2005."

The ThinkQuest Internet Challenge matches teens of different backgrounds, continents, and cultures, to create educational websites. This year's participants come from more than 80 countries, and the finalists, who will be going to Geneva, represent almost 20 countries.

The ThinkQuest students communicate and collaborate by email and chat sessions, assign themselves tasks from research to graphic and web design, and work with an adult coach to bring their website from conception to culmination. For most of the finalists, the Geneva event is the first time they will meet their teammates in-person."


Dinosaur Treks has won the top prize in the Science and Mathematics category for the 2000 ThinkQuest Internet Challenge! On March 19th, during the Awards Ceremony at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland, they announced that our site was the Platinum Award Winner.

Click Here to Read the Article that Appeared in the Daily Iowan on March 23, 2001.

Please go visit our award-winning site, Dinosaur Treks, and
sign the guestbook
. Thanks!

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