Hello! My name is Shatera McNair, and I am a member of the Baltimore Biocrew. The Baltimore Biocrew is a group of 15 high school students in Baltimore City that have created a biosynthetic project designed to save the Baltimore Inner Habor from the detrimental invasion of microplastics. We have created a solution that involves genetically engineering bacteria to consume and destroy the microplastics that pollute the Baltimore Inner Harbor. All summer long, we have been working on this project to enter our project into the IGEM competition that's in Boston, Massachusetts. The Inner Harbor is home to hundreds of different plastics that kill the aquatic life, bringing pollution and negativity to the heart of the city. Thus, The Baltimore Biocrew's solution to this environmental problem is to put genes into E. coli which will allow them to consume and destroy PET microplastics in the Harbor. Then, after making the genetically modified E. coli bacteria, we will dispatch them into the Harbor to test whether they are able to destroy the plastics within the water. Last year, we presented this project in the IGEM competition, and we won a bronze medal! The IGEM competition is a competition in Boston where teams of college students participate and present their biosynthetic projects in front of judges. Thus, we as high school students have the privilege to participate in this competition for college students. This year, we want to enter again and win gold! But we need money to travel from Baltimore to Boston, including airfare and the hotel for out entire team of 15 members! So we ask for your help in giving us money to help us travel to the IGEM competition in September! Any amount of money would help us immensely! Thank you so much from The Baltimore Biocrew!