Jefferson students succeed at Regional Science Fair


Many Jefferson students concluded Regional Science Fair with first and second place wins, in addition to the numerous Grand Prize nominations and decisions.

Henry Wang, Online Staff

From March 14 to 16, Jefferson students competed in the Fairfax County Regional Science and Engineering Fair held at Robinson Secondary High School. Students spent months preparing for their projects and presented them for the second time at Robinson.

“After presenting this year, I felt pretty great. Presenting my work to people from places like the CIA and science societies across the metropolitan area was really cool,” sophomore Satvika Kumar, who has also participated in the science fair last year, said. “It was such a rewarding experience and I met a lot of new people who shared the same interests, which was great.”

Projects had a wide range of topics, from microbiology to computer science to astronomy and were judged by professionals in each area of expertise.

“I think the Science Fair was a terrific showcase of just how talented our students are,“ Vice Principal Shawn DeRose said. “The quality of our science fair projects sets our students up not only to do well, but also at the next level.”

Grand Prize Winners are seniors Parth Chopra for Computer Science and Archis Bhandarkar for Mathematical Sciences while Grand Prize Alternates are seniors Manotri Chaubal for Cellular and Molecular Biology and Samuel Rohrer for Engineering: Electrical & Mechanical. Grand Prize Winners will proceed directly to compete in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) to be held in Los Angeles, California from May 11 to 16.

Grand Prize Nominees include senior Sahitya Allam and Anthony Carrington for Animal Sciences, senior Andrea Li for Cellular and Molecular Biology, senior James Wang for Chemistry, senior Rachel Zoll for Engineering & Bioengineering, seniors Tiffney Kathir, Simran Rohatgi, and Isabelle Walton for Environmental Analysis, seniors Yul Yi Cho, Caitlin Kim, and Krista Opsahl-Ong for Environmental Management, senior Sindhura Kolachana for Medicine and Health Sciences, senior Tina Ju for Microbiology, seniors Shayna Hume and Emma Puranen for Physics and Astronomy, junior Annika Kim for Biochemistry, Junior Richard Oh for Engineering: Materials & Bioengineering, junior Ramya Radhakrishnan for Medicine and Health Sciences and sophomore Satvika Kumar for Engineering: Materials & Bioengineering. All Grand Prize Nominees also won First Place in their respective categories, however some first place winners may not have received a Grand Prize Nominee due to scoring by the judges. First place winners will proceed to Virginia’s State Science and Engineering Fair in Lexington, Va. and if they place at states, will proceed to ISEF.

Second place winners consist of senior Srikanth Chelluri for Animal Sciences, seniors Jennifer Du and Sanjana Epari for Animal Sciences, senior William Moses for Computer Science, senior Jae Young Chang for Engineering: Materials & Bioengineering, senior James Sullivan for Physics and Astronomy and junior Pooja Chandrashekar for Mathematical Sciences.

“I thought the projects at regionals this year were really good,” senior and Grand Prize Nominee Andrea Li said. “ISEF last year was an incredible, completely unforgettable experience. I got first place in my category, and the feeling of being up there on stage at the end of that week was absolutely incredible. The entire experience was one I wouldn’t trade for anything.”