We just found out that seniors Laura Goetz, Sarah Posner and Marc Bouchet have been nationally recognized in the Siemens Science and Technology Competition, one of the biggest science contests for high schools. Laura is a National Semifinalist, and Sarah and Marc, who worked together and are in the team portion of the competition, are Regional Finalists. Sarah and Marc now advance to present their work at the University of Notre Dame in November, and are now in the running for large scholarships. This is similar to what happened last year with Julia Crowley-Farenga and Patrick Loftus, who ended up winning a $40,000 scholarship after placing 3rd in the country for their work in astrophysics.
Laura worked in the Prof. Morimoto lab at Northwestern, and her research, which looked at identifying
genetic modifiers of polyglutamine expansion toxicity in Caenorhabditis elegans, has implications for Hutchingston's disease research.
Sarah and Marc studied properties of tandem organic solar cells that they made in the lab of Prof. Tobin Marks at NU, and worked under the mentoring of graduate student Nanjia Zhou. They are the only Regional Finalists from Illinois.
I also want to recognize senior David McDonald for his paper on the segregation and stratification of mixtures of different sized granular materials. This work has implications for agriculture and new drug development. David worked in the lab of Profs. Richard Lueptow and Paul Umbanhowar at Northwestern.
A very small percentage of students nationwide do high-level, independent research like this, largely because of time but also because it is difficult and must require countless hours of study and work in the lab, so these students need to be given some recognition for their efforts and contributions to several fields of science! WELL DONE!!