Congratulations to the PWCS students who received top awards at the 2021 Virginia State Science and Engineering Fair
Posted on 04/13/2021
image of the virginia state science fair logo on a dark backgroundCongratulations to these PWCS students, who made an outstanding showing at the 2021 Virginia State Science and Engineering Fair (VSSEF), held virtually on Saturday, April 10. The fair offers four awards by category (first, second, third, and honorable mention) and student exhibits may also receive one of several “special category" awards.

Tony Bright, Hamza Lateef, and Gabriel Ralston, (Charles J. Colgan Sr. High School, grade 10), earned first place in the biomedical and health sciences category for the project “SeizureSeeker: A Novel Approach to Epileptic Seizure Detection Using Machine Learning.” The group also received the following special awards: third place, the Mark Licata Award for Biotechnology, from the Virginia Bioscience Foundation; and third place and $300 in the computational sciences category from Leidos.

Vongdara De Lopez (Forest Park High School), Jayson De La Vega (Osbourn Park High School), and Trevor White (Battlefield High School), (grade 12), who also attend the Governors School @ Innovation Park, earned first place in the embedded systems category for the project “Backpack Acceleration Sensor: A Novel Approach to Mitigating Back Pain in First Responders.”

Naman Agarwal, (Patriot High School, grade 10), earned first place in the plant sciences category for the project “An Indoor Farm Scouter Through Time-Based Imaging.”

Aatish Sethi (Battlefield High School) and Jasmine Agyepong (Patriot High School), (grade 11), who also attend the Governors School @ Innovation Park, earned second place in the biochemistry category for the project “A New Treatment? An Analysis of the Effect of Known Phytochemicals on SARS-CoV-2 Pathogenesis.”

Michael Suadwa (Potomac High School, grade 12), Raj Joshi (Battlefield High School, grade 11), and Laaibah Tayyeb (Osbourn Park High School, grade 11), who also attend the Governors School @ Innovation Park, earned second place in the materials science category for the project “A Novel Development of a Biodegradable Facemask Using Gelatin-Based Bioplastics.”

Khoi Nguyen, Anish Pothireddy, and Ashish Pothireddy, (Osbourn Park High School, grade 12, who also attend the Governors School @ Innovation Park, earned third place in the computational biology and bioinformatics category for the project “Augmenting 3D, T1-Weighted, Magnetization-Prepared Rapid Acquisition with Gradient-Echo (MP-RAGE) Sequenced MRIs Through Gaussian Filters and Skull Stripping for Alzheimer¿s Disease Diagnosis via 3D CNNs.”

Samyak Thapa (Charles J. Colgan Sr. High School), Aditi Shastri (Battlefield High School), and Vishnu Lakshmanan (Osbourn Park High School), (grade 12), who also attend the Governors School @ Innovation Park, earned third place in the mathematics category for the project “Forecasting Stock Prices by Utilizing Recurrent Neural Networks and Probabilistic Statistical Risk Analysis.”

Ebru Ayyorgun, (Battlefield High School, grade 10), earned third place in the microbiology category for the project "Agent-Based Modelling, Simulation and Analysis of the Effect of Surface Texture on Biofilm Formation."

Anika Mukul and Aditi Mukul, (Battlefield High School, grade 11), earned third place in the physics and astronomy category for the project "Quantum Dot Supercapacitors - The Impact of Variation of Supercapacitor Electrolyte Base Material on Capacitance and Supercapacitor Discharge Time."

Special awards:

Trinity Chamblin, (Charles J Colgan Sr. High School, grade 11), earned second place, the Mark Licata Award for Biotechnology from the Virginia Bioscience Foundation for the biochemistry project “The Battle of the Agents: The Effect of Different EDTA Chelating Agents on the Antimicrobial Activity present within a Bacterial Growth Medium.”

Dailly Cassidy, (Osbourn Park High School, grade 9), earned third place and $100 in the Virginia Section of American Water Works Association for the Earth and environmental sciences project “The Effect of Different Flocculants and Coagulants on the Filtration and Turbidity of Water.”

The fair is coordinated by the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Fralin Biomedical Research Institute.