Yesterday, Carnegie Mellon announced the winners of the 2015 Alfred P. Sloan Script Competition. The grants are given annually to the best screenplay or television pilot furthering public understanding of science and technology, with four screenwriters recognized in the 2015 competition. This year Carnegie Mellon awarded $35,000 in Sloan grants to two feature length screenplays, a miniseries pilot, and a television pilot.

The winners are:

First Place:
The Pill - Written by Dan Giles
As a visionary but conflicted chemist completes his masterpiece --- the birth control pill ---his scientist daughter must come to terms with her idol’s failures if she wants to follow in his footsteps.

Second Place:
The River Gods - Written by Levi Jelks
Lionus Walker is a young Black scientist who, with the help of a boat and a local medicine man, makes a journey along the Mississippi River to take a leprosy patient to Carville, Louisiana. Fleeing the dangerous man hunting him, Lionus discovers that the waters of Ol’ Blue do not offer freedom from the past, but instead, provides a direct roadway to it. But is it possible for the old tub to go even farther? --- possibly to Harvard?

Third Place (tie):
Colossus (miniseries pilot) - Written by Eugenie Carabatsos
A working-class engineer is recruited by a Top Secret British Intelligence unit at the onset of World War II. Thrust into the world of intelligence operations, he overcomes class prejudice and resistance to his research, as he designs the world’s first programmable electronic computer, helping to ensure allied victory. Based on the true story of Tommy Flowers, the forgotten father of the computer.

Arkansas Auguries (pilot) - Written by Julie Jigour
When thousands of blackbirds fall dead from the sky in Beebe, Arkansas, an ornithologist is called to return to her hometown, where she must confront the tragedy in her past.