Skip to main content
On March 11, 2003 Intel Corporation and Society for Science & the Public awarded the top 10 college scholarship awards for the Intel Science Talent Search (STS) at a black-tie banquet in Washington, D.C.
Jamie Elyce Rubin, Florida
First Place: $100,000
Jamie Elyce Rubin, 16, of Fort Myers, designed a therapeutic agent that could potentially be used in treating infections caused by the fungus Candida albicans for her biochemistry project submitted to the Intel Science Talent Search. Jamie was inspired by her volunteer work at Hope Hospice, where many patients suffer from these infections, including candidiasis, which can be life-threatening to anyone with a compromised immune system. At the University of Florida's Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Lab, Jamie focused on a family of enzymes known as the secreted aspartic proteinases (Saps) which has been identified as a key virulence factor of pathogenic Candida. A major challenge was to combinatorially design an inhibitor that is strongly accepted by Saps, but not by similar native human enzymes. Jamie believes she found an answer in an amino acid sequence that can allow Saps to be effectively targeted. Jamie has earned perfect SAT scores and is first in her class of 51 at the Canterbury School, where she runs cross-country, plays piano and handbells and is active in theater. The daughter of Dr. Michael and Felinda Rubin, she hopes to study at Harvard.
Tianhui "Michael" Li, Oregon
Second Place: $75,000
Tianhui "Michael" Li, 17, of Portland, submitted a physics entry to the Intel Science Talent Search based on his three-year study of inertial-electrostatic confinement (IEC), a radically different and significantly less costly way of confining nuclear fusion than conventional methods. Michael had already built two IEC reactors prior to the most recent phase of his research, which was conducted at the Propulsion Research Laboratory of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center. As a student volunteer, he worked on developing a proton detection system and collimator-a device for producing a parallel beam of radiation. At the Oregon Episcopal School, Michael founded the school's DOE Science Bowl team and a geopolitical club focused on world affairs. He is the author of award-winning essays for competitions sponsored by the United States Institute of Peace and the World Affairs Council, and a recipient of the Young Artists Concerto Competition. An accomplished classical pianist, who has performed with the Portland Symphony Orchestra, he has also studied Afro-Caribbean music forms. Michael is the son of Zaiyi Chen and was born in China. He hopes to study computer science in college.
Anatoly Preygel, Maryland
Third Place: $50,000
Anatoly Preygel, 17, of Germantown, submitted a mathematics project to the Intel Science Talent Search reporting on his study of knot theory, which examines closed curves in three-dimensional space. Anatoly's research investigates some aspects of the recently introduced quandle cocycle knot invariants. He addressed the hard question of when two knots are the same (isotopic). Using "quandle coloring," he gives a new invariant, "degree," and shows how to compute it. He also links degree to the bridge number of the knot. The study of mathematical knot theory is the subject of increasing academic interest because of possible applications in physics, chemistry and genetics. At Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, Anatoly is active in the science and math clubs, maintains the school web site and works as system administrator. He has received many math and computer programming awards as well as the Rensselaer Science and Math Medal. The son of Dr. Ilya and Sofya Preygel, Anatoly was born in Moldova, and he reads Russian and French fluently. He plans to study math and computer science at MIT preparing for a career as a professor of mathematics.
Peter Michal Pawlowski, California
Fourth Place: $25,000
Peter Michal Pawlowski, 17, of Fullerton, submitted a chemistry project to the Intel Science Talent Search in which he used quantum mechanics to define the structure and stability of the sulfur trioxide-ammonia complex. The NH3SO3(H2O)n complex may act as an effective nucleation agent responsible for formation of atmospheric aerosols, cloud particles and smog. Greater knowledge of the physical nucleation process could lead to a better understanding of the dynamics of smog formation, which, in turn, could lead to improved techniques for controlling and preventing it. Peter hopes to major in computer science and mathematics at Stanford after graduation from Troy High School. He heads the school's national championship Science Olympiad team, science bowl team, math club and astronomy club, and he is a recent board member of the community service club. He enjoys sailing, photography, martial arts, tennis and web design, and his numerous math and science honors include the Rensselaer Science and Math Medal. Peter, who was born in Poland, is the son of Dr. Tomasz Pawlowski and Dr. Anna Pawlowska.
Naveen Neil Sinha, New Mexico
Fifth Place: $25,000
Naveen Neil Sinha, 17, of Los Alamos, developed a novel approach for studying the evolution of air bubbles in liquids for his Intel Science Talent Search project in physics. Naveen combined passive listening and ultrasonic Doppler measurements to study bubble formation and growth, detachment and resonance, rise to terminal velocity and size. All aspects of bubble behavior are affected by the properties of the liquid, such as surface tension, density and viscosity. Current acoustic and optical methods of studying bubbles can only examine one or two of these aspects. Naveen believes his technique will support development of inexpensive liquid characterization sensors for use in quality and process control in a variety of industries. Naveen, who has perfect SAT scores, attends Los Alamos High School where he was a member of the Science Olympiad team and debate team. In 2002, he received the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award and attended the Nobel ceremony in Stockholm. A member of the Acoustical Society of America, Naveen holds a patent on a process using ultrasound to detect materials on metal surfaces. The son of Drs. Dipen and Barbara Sinha, he plans a research career in applied physics.
Lester Wayne Mackey, New York
Sixth Place: $25,000
Lester Wayne Mackey, 17, of Wheatley Heights, submitted a mathematics project to the Intel Science Talent Search researching Seymour's Conjecture using a combinatorial methodology and a focus on regular graphs to confirm Seymour's claim. Seymour's Conjecture proposes that the square G2 of an oriented graph G will always have a vertex with at least twice as many edges going from it as has G. He shows that Seymour's Conjecture is valid for graphs with certain regularity conditions. First in his class at Half Hollow Hills High School West in Dix Hills, Lester sings in the jazz choir and chorus, and takes part in Key Club, National Spanish Honor Society, yearbook and the quiz bowl. He has received numerous academic honors including the Rensselaer Math and Science Medal and the Brown Book Award. In his spare time, he enjoys robotics, bowling, drumming and rock collecting, and he serves as a deacon of the church youth group and vice president of the church choir. The son of Lester and Dr. Sharon Mackey, he earned a perfect 1600 on his SATs and hopes to major in computer science or computer engineering at Princeton or Carnegie Mellon University.
Carolyn Morgan Tewksbury, New York
Seventh Place: $20,000
Carolyn Morgan Tewksbury, 17, of Deansboro, examines the geology of Venus for her earth and space sciences project for the Intel Science Talent Search. Carolyn sought to discover whether any of the large cryptic circular structures on Venus are collapsed crustal plateaus. Based on her work with synthetic stereo imaging, she believes she documents the first collapsed and partially buried crustal plateau to be identified on Venus and helps resolve the controversy between age, and upwelling and downwelling models of plateau formation on the planet. Abstracts of her research were accepted for three national meetings of the Geological Society of America. As a futurist, she believes planetary geology will become crucial when the human race begins habitation of Mars. At Clinton Senior High School, Carolyn has assisted the director for school theater productions. She has won many science awards, is a multiple award winner in bagpiping and Scottish Highland dancing competitions, and is writing a fantasy/science fiction novel. The daughter of David and Dr. Barbara Tewksbury, Carolyn plans to study geology and Arabic at Smith College. Ultimately, she wants to become an astronaut.
Yi-Chen Zhang, New York
Eighth Place: $20,000
Yi-Chen Zhang, 17, of Forest Hills, submitted to the Intel Science Talent Search a medicine and health project examining the influence of pesticides on cockroach allergens associated with respiratory disorders such as asthma. In working with a research team at the Columbia University School of Public Health, Yi-Chen ("Lilly") maintained experimental colonies of German cockroaches, which she exposed to non-lethal doses of boric acid and hydramethylnon gel pesticides. She used immunological assays and statistical analyses to measure fecal allergen concentration, and concluded that cockroach ingestion of low concentrations of boric acid pesticides increased their production of a major allergen, while ingestion of the other pesticide did not. Lilly was the first author of an abstract of this study, which she presented at the 2002 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology conference. After graduation from The Bronx High School of Science, she hopes to pursue research in immunology at the University of Chicago. Born in China, Lilly is the daughter of Jian-Jun Zhang and Xiao-Yuan Tang. Her hobbies include painting, papermaking, photography and writing.
Anna Gekker, New York
Ninth Place: $20,000
Anna Gekker, 17, of Brooklyn, examined the impact of visitation and other psychosocial factors on the recovery time and level of health improvement of older patients in a subacute rehabilitation setting for her Intel Science Talent Search project in behavioral and social sciences. She believes her study proves that visitation helps the recovery process and reduces the length of stay not only for patients with physical disabilities but also for those with mental disabilities. Thus, policies providing more opportunities for visitation could significantly reduce the cost of subacute rehabilitation. At Brooklyn Technical High School, Anna is a member of the tennis and math teams, and she writes for Math Student Magazine. She volunteers as an intern at Coney Island Hospital and competes nationally in ballroom dancing. Anna's many awards include a gold medal at the New York State Mathematics Fair in both 2001 and 2002. Born in Moldova and fluent in Russian, she is the first person from the former Soviet Union to win a city-wide first place award for her essay "What the American Flag Means to Me." The daughter of Semen and Dr. Irina Gekker, Anna hopes to attend NYU and pursue a career in medicine.
Emma Rose Schmidgall, Minnesota
Tenth Place: $20,000
Emma Rose Schmidgall, 17, of Golden Valley, submitted a physics project to the Intel Science Talent Search in which she analyzed scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) images of the high temperature superconductor, Bi2Sr2Ca2CuO8+( (BSCCO). BSCCO's superconducting properties vary considerably with oxygen content, and Emma examined the hypothesis that the effects of oxygen atoms are related to specific locations within the structure. She developed a computer algorithm using Interactive Data Language (IDL) to analyze STM images (which show atom locations) and compared them to an ideal BSCCO model. Although her investigations provided no firm conclusions about the local role of oxygen atoms in superconductivity, Emma believes that significant progress was made in understanding the physics of the BSCCO structure. Emma is first in her class of 481 at Robbinsdale Cooper High School in New Hope, where she is captain of the speech team and a violinist in the school orchestra. An enthusiastic fencer and amateur astronomer, she is the daughter of Steven Schmidgall and Debra Wensman. Emma hopes to major in physics at the University of Chicago, MIT or Caltech.
Sign-up for the free SSP newsletter today.
PLEASE CONTACT US
1719 N Street, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20036202.785.2255
© 2013 Copyright
CONNECT WITH SSP