Year ago I met book of J. Ellenberg "How Not to Be Wrong. The Power of Mathematical Thinking" (New York Times Bestseller).
IMHO, Research Teachers Conference in DC had the same power of a bestseller "How Not to Be Wrong in Doing Research and Science Process with Students". I was really surprised, how many various powerful ways this conference had shown. Congratulations to organizers.
After comeback, I am immediately applying new knowledge from the conference, for example better concentration on gritty students, use of padlets in improving creativity, use of Science News samples which we obtained in teaching (e.g. based on the paper about oldest fossils, October 1, p. 7, we provide scans of fossils to study their geometry), better literature searches, more efficient research programs etc.
My experience is one for the ages! I had never heard of the Science Talent Search (STS) until an email from them arrived in the summer of 2015. The email said I could be part of a random drawing to attend a conference in the fall to learn about the program. I was fortunate enough to be chosen when someone else declined. After attending the conference I went back and told one of my students to apply. On the day of submission she told me that she was not going to submit because she thought they would laugh at her work. She ultimately submitted and went on to win a first place "Global Good" award and 150000$! My student was a girl from a humble upbringing in Bangor Maine who never dreamed something like this could happen. The STS program gives students from across this great country the opportunity to have experiences like my student had. I am forever grateful to them for what they have done and will do for countless others!
After reading your comments about the OlympicsThe Intel® International Science and Engineering Fair® (Intel ISEF) wanted to take part in this competition with her students this year for the first time.