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East High student scientists excel at regional competition

 PM East HS PJAS Winners
The months of preparation paid off for 23 Pocono Mountain East High School students who earned awards for their research projects at the 56th Annual Regional Meeting of The Pennsylvania Junior Academy of Science (PJAS) at Wilkes University.

The East students were among 39 Pocono Mountain School District students and 750 students from over 7 counties in Northeastern PA who presented their research projects to a panel of judges at the prestigious science competition.

Freshman Karol Bialk earned a perfect score and an Excellence Award in Junior High Botany for his research project, “Different Light’s Effect on Plant Growth;” sophomore Michael Olsen earned an Excellence Award in Physics for his research project, “Color of an LED's Effect on Thermal Equilibrium;” freshman Mikayla Regan earned an Excellence Award in Junior High Ecology for her research project, “Ferrofluid and Petroleum Clean Up.”

An excellence award is given to one Junior High student (grades 7-9) and one Senior High student (grades 10-12) in each of the research categories. PMSD students earned 4 of these outstanding awards.

Also, freshman Dushaum Thompson earned a perfect score in Behavioral Science for his research project, “Effect of Reinforcement of Test Scores.”

Perseverance Awards were presented to the following seniors who have participated in PJAS Regional Competition for a minimum of three years:
  • Chelsea Gamble- 6 years (PME)
  • Richard Trott- 6 years (PME)
  • Daniel Serfass- 5 years (PME)
In addition, the following students earned First and Second Awards:
 
First Awards:
  • Karol Bialk, grade 9, research category – Botany, project – “Different Light's Effect on Plant Growth”
  • Brianna Cook 9 Behavioral Science Do People See You Differently than You See Yourself
  • Jackie Dudley, grade 9, research category – Microbiology, project – “Mouthpiece Size's Effect on Bacterial Growth” 
  • Chelsea Gamble, grade 12, research category - Microbiology , research projects – “The Copper Cure” and "It’s Electric” (Chelsea presented two experiments and won two First Awards)
  • Nicholas Govus, grade 11, research category – Zoology, project – “EMF's Effect on the Heart Rate of Ghost Shrimp” 
  • Shannon Lawlor, grade 9, research category – Ecology, project – “Fertilizer's Effect on Plant Growth” 
  • Sean Meyer, grade 9, research category – Engineering, project – “The Sheer Strength of Construction Materials” 
  • Dean Nyberg, grade 9, research category – Physics, project - “Temperature's Effect on Pitch” 
  • Michael Olsen, grade 10, research category – Physics, project - “Color of an LED's Effect on Thermal Equilibrium” 
  • Rocco Polimeni, grade 10, research category – Physics, project – “Focusing a Wi-fi Signal” 
  • Hannah Price, grade 9, research category – Zoology, project – “Fur Color's Effect on Feline Identification”
  • Mikayla Regan, grade 9, research category – Ecology, project – “Ferrofluid and Petroleum Clean Up”
  • Daniel Serfass, grade 12, research category - Microbiology, project - "The Effect of Varying Dietary Factors on the Gut Microbiome" 
  • Danielle Shermock, grade 11, research category – Physics, project – “The Effect of Surface Area on Traction” 
  • Dushaum Thompson, grade 9, research category - Behavioral Science, project – “Effect of Reinforcement of Test Scores”
Second Awards:
  • Abigail Franzo, grade 9, research category – Physics, project – “How does the foot placement affect the speed of a soccer ball?” 
  • Gabrielle Miranda, grade 11, research category - Behavioral Science, project – “Differences in Male & Female Brains when Processing Color” 
  • Jack Pence, grade 9, research category – Physics, project – “Magnet's Temperature and the Effect on Water Velocity” 
  • Marco Polimeni, grade 10, research category - Computer Science, project – “A.I.Game”
  • Kristina Rinaldi, grade 10, research category – Microbiology, project – “Bacteria Growth on Organic vs. Non-Organic Chicken” 
  • Luis Santos, grade 11, research category – Chemistry, project – “Fastest Acting Antacid” 
  • Richard Trott, grade 12, research category - Microbiology, project - "Using Cooking Oils to Prevent Bacterial Gastroenteritis" 
  • Madeline Walsh, grade 12, research category - Chemistry, project - "The Effectiveness of Sunscreen in Makeup
First Award winners will join over 3,000 students from all over the state to compete at the PJAS State Meeting held at The Pennsylvania State University on May 14-16.
(Information and photo provided by Pocono Mountain School District PJAS Advisors Dr. Susan Thackara, Maureen Elswick, Michael Blough and Suzanne Croll)