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40 Finalists Chosen for Science Talent Search 2012

The Intel Foundation and the Society for Science and the Public have selected 40 finalists, representing 16 states and 39 schools, for the Intel Science Talent Search 2012.

The oldest pre-college science competition in the United States, The Intel Science Talent Search "encourages students to tackle challenging scientific questions and develop the skills to solve the problems of today and tomorrow," according to information released by the organizations.

Competing for $630,000 in awards, including $100,000 for the top winner, the finalists will be judged on their scientific research, achievement, and leadership skills in Washington D.C. March 8-13.

"Tackling real-world challenges from cancer to Internet security to alternative energy solutions, this year's finalists are a true inspiration," said Elizabeth Marincola, president of the Society for Science and the Public. "We join with Intel in congratulating them on this tremendous honor, and commend the mentors, teachers, schools, parents and communities that have contributed to their success."

The finalists are:

  • Jiacheng Li of Arcadia High School for "Algorithm-Based Fault Tolerance for Cascading Designs via Diagonal Check Values;"
  • Sayoni Saha of Gretchen Whitney High School for "A Doll That Looks Likes Me: A Study of Self-Concept in Children with Down Syndrome;"
  • Clara Louisa Fannjiang of Davis Senior High School for "Better Images, Fewer Samples: Optimizing Array Configuration for Compressed Sensing in Radio Interferometry;"
  • Jack Zhihao Li of El Segundo High School for "Novel pH-responsive Encapsulated Phenylalanine Ammonia Lyase as an Enzyme Replacement Therapy for Phenylketonuria;"
  • Leon Yao of Troy High School for "A Novel Scheme for Achieving Quasi-Uniform Rate Polarization Scrambling at 752krad/s;"
  • Meredith Paloma Lehmann of La Jolla High School for "The Spread of Epidemics on the US Transportation Network: The Role of Air and Long Distance Auto Travel;"
  • Jin Pan of Henry M. Gunn High School for "A Novel Protein Translation Kinetics Model Supports the Ribosomal Pause Theory;"
  • Saurabh Sharan of Bellarmine College Preparatory School for "Parameter-Free Graph-Based Nuclear Segmentation in Cellular Images Using Morphological Cues;"
  • Alissa Yuan Zhang of Saratoga High School for "Molecular Fingerprinting of Glucose with Raman and SERS for Noninvasive Diabetes Monitoring;"
  • Zizi Yu of Amity Regional High School for "Investigating the Hygiene Hypothesis: A Case-Control Study of Food Allergies and Age of Food Allergen Exposure in High School Teenagers;"
  • Neel S. Patel of Oviedo High School for "A Four-Year Analysis of Sonifications for Use in Innovative Human-Computer Interfaces;"
  • Sitan Chen of Northview High School for "On the Rank Number of Grid Graphs;"
  • Adam Orval Kalinich of Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy for "Flipping the Winner of a Poset Game;"
  • Jordan Saul Cotler of Glenbrook North High School for "A Relativistic Orthogonal States Quantum Key Distribution Protocol for Secure Satellite Communication;"
  • Eric Edgar Fein of John Adams High School for "Characterizing Engineered Nanoparticle Adhesion to Soil Minerals: Implications for Environmental Transport and Remediation;"
  • Anirudh Prabhu of West Lafayette Junior-Senior High School for "Lower Bounds for Odd Perfect Numbers;"
  • Frederic Koehler of Montgomery Blair High School for "Quick and Efficient: Fast Algorithms for Completion Time and Batch Minimization on Multiple Machines;"
  • Xiaoyu He of Acton-Boxborough Regional High School for "On the Classification of Universal Rotor-Routers;"
  • Fengning Ding of Phillips Academy for "Infinitesimal Cherednik Algebras of gln;"
  • Siddhartha Jena of Gautam International Academy for "Elevated Cholesterol Impairs Water and Gas Transport in Red Blood Cells;"
  • Philip Cody He of Okemos High School for "A Novel Role of an Actin Capping Protein in Plant Immune Signaling;"
  • Nithin Reddy Tumma of Port Huron Northern High School for "Elucidating Pathways in Cancer Pathogenesis: Establishment of Interaction Between TGF-β/Ras Pathways and Identification of gC1qR as an Oncoprotein;"
  • Evan Matthew Chen of Wayzata High School for "CD24 Induced Muscular Regeneration: Unraveling the Mystery Behind Satellite Cell Differentiation;"
  • EunBe Kim of Academy for Medical Science Technology for "Tamoxifen: Novel Approach for the Treatment of Estrogen Receptor Negative Cancers;"
  • Danielle Goldman of Bronx High School of Science for "The Role of GABA in the Comorbidity of Adolescent MDD and GAD;"
  • Savina Dine Kim of Commack High School for "Cognitive Deficits in Neuropsychiatric Disorders: A Schizophrenia Model Associated with Neuronal Alpha7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Localization;"
  • Anna Sato of Ward Melville High School for "A Novel Adsorptive Filtration Approach for the Removal of Radioactive Isotopes of Iodine and Cesium from Water:"
  • Juliana Mathea Coraor of Huntington High School for "The Impact of Compressive Misfit Strain on Improper Ferroelectricity in Lead Titanate/Strontium Titanate Superlattices;"
  • Neil Kamlesh Mehta of Jericho Senior High School for "Co-restoration of Type III Nrg1 Back Signaling through Depolarization: Implications for Schizophrenia;"
  • Angela Wang of Shaker High School for "A Comparison of Montages to Optimize Classification in an Auditory Brain-Computer Interface;"
  • Huihui Fan, of Stuyvesant High School for "Root Nutrient Foraging: A Morphometric Approach to Quantifying the Developmental Plasticity Space of Arabidopsis Ecotypes in Laboratory and Natural Environments;"
  • Mimi Yen of Stuyvesant High School for "Characterizing the Behavior and Genetics of Headplugging in C. elegans;"
  • Rachel Michelle Davis of Smithtown High School East for "Engineering Biodegradable Flame Retardant Polymers;"
  • Benjamin Mark Van Doren of White Plains High School for "Meteorological, Topographical and Behavioral Correlates of Diurnal Autumn Morning Flight Migration in the Northeastern United States;"
  • Marian Joan Bechtel of Hempfield High School for "A Stand-Off Seismo-Acoustic Method for Humanitarian Demining;"
  • Kurtis Mickel Carsch of Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science for "DFT Modeling of a Methane-to-Methanol Oxy-Insertion Catalytic Cycle via Group 6 Organometallics: A Computational Analysis;"
  • Amy Cindy Chyao of Plano East Senior High School for "Lights, Quantum Dots, Action!;"
  • Oliver Adolfo Quintero of The John Cooper School for "On the Synthesis of a New Wide Electrochemical Window Ionic Liquid for Advanced Electrochemical Endeavors;"
  • Ari Misha Dyckovsky of Loudoun County Academy of Science for "Analysis of Photon-Mediated Entanglement Between Distinguishable Matter Qubits;" and
  • Andrey Sushko of Hanford High School for "Electrowetting for Novel Electromechanical Applications."

Previous competitors in the 70-year-old competition include seven Nobel Prize winners, two Fields Medal winners, three National Medal of Science winners, and 11 MacArthur Foundation Fellowship winners.

"The U.S. needs these talented innovators to go as far and as fast as they can, solving the world's most critical challenges, imagining--and creating--a new and better future for us all," said Wendy Hawkins, executive director of the Intel Foundation. "Math and science are the language and tools of this innovation--that's why Intel is so proud to invest in these students, and to advance math and science education for all students."

More information is available at

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at [email protected].