Students Selected for Junior Science and Humanities Symposium

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Six seniors in the district were recently selected as semifinalists for the Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS).

Katherine Ratner and Brian Kishinevsky of Calhoun, Sarah Moussavi and Steven Obadiah of Kennedy, and Sara Shamenek and Sarah Schneider of Mepham all Advanced Science Research (ASR) students, will advance to the final round and present their research on Feb. 7.

Katherine’s topic is “Power Dissipation of Tropical Cyclones in the Atlantic Basin by Sub-Region of Origin.”

“After watching the results of Hurricane Sandy, which was only a tropical storm when it made landfall in the northeast, I began to wonder if the current rating for hurricanes was enough to predict the potential damage a storm could cause,” she said.

Katherine plans to major in Atmospheric Sciences at Cornell University in the fall.

“Because of ASR I have experience in the field I plan to spend my life working in, and confirmation that I want to pursue research,” Katherine added.
Brian’s topic is “Orbits of Curves on a 4 Holed Sphere.”

“I chose to research mathematics because math is fun,” he said. “Through my three years in the ASR program, I learned what science research really means: the hard work, the discussion of ideas and much paperwork.”

Sarah Moussavi’s topic is “Metacognition and Confidence in a Perceptual Decision-Making Task.”

Sarah’s research at an oncological science lab over the summer intrigued her to find out how confident people feel about their decision, and she “investigated deeper to see if her subjects were aware of their own uncertainty.”
Steven’s topic is “The Manipulation of Microfilaments and Microtubules during Cotton Fiber Initiation.”

Sara Shamenek, a senior at Mepham, conducted research on Correlates of Adolescent BMI and High School Cafeteria Usage.

Sarah Schneider, a senior at Mepham, conducted research on Toward Biofuel Production: Augmentation of Acid Biosynthesis in Transgenic Chlamydomonas reinhardii under Conditions of Nitrogen Deprivation.

JSHS is designed to challenge and engage students (Grades 9-12) in science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM). Individual students compete for scholarships and recognition by presenting the results of their original research efforts before a panel of judges and an audience of their peers.