Local high-schooler takes a magical approach to scholarship challenge


An Albuquerque student’s creativity earned her a spot as a finalist in an international competition that could help her pay her way through college.

“I wanted to do something really out of the box,” said Adelyn Moore from La Cueva High School.

The self-described ‘Harry Potter nerd’ drew inspiration from her favorite wizard and created a video about a major scientific concept for the Breakthrough Junior Challenge.

“I chose the topic of ‘P vs. NP” which is a concept that kinda tests the impossibility of math. NP problems are problems we don’t know how to solve yet. If we did know how to solve them, we would have a cure for cancer,” said Moore. 

Moore got the idea from her grandmother, a mathematician, who she used to practice math with for fun.

“I absolutely love math,” said Moore. 

The natural problem solver can figure out a lot on her own and quickly realize she needed help solving a pricey one. 

“I started looking at all the colleges I really wanted to go to and I realized, I can’t pay for them,” said Moore.

She knew she had the grades, activities and skills to write a killer admission essay. She just needed to figure out to pay for her dream colleges, Duke or Dartmouth. So, she started looking for scholarships. 

“It said, quarter million dollars for the student who wins — and I was like, ‘Wow, this would put me through college,'” said Moore. 

The Breakthrough Junior Challenge asks students to explain a scientific concept.

Adelyn uses Harry Potter to explore the “P vs NP” concept. The concept tests math problems there aren’t answers to yet. 

Moore spent weeks working on her Harry Potter themed video.

“I really tried to make it relatable,” said Moore. 

Now, if Moore wins, her entire school wins. 

“My school gets a brand new science lab worth $100,000, which is really great,” said Moore. 

She is currently in the top 30. Moore needs likes, comments and shares on her Facebook video to win the competition.

To help Adelyn out, you can vote here.

Voting goes until September 20. 

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