DOWNINGTOWN, PA — Students in grades 6-12 from across Chester County and their families gathered at the Technical College High School (TCHS) Brandywine Campus for the Dr. Lucy Balian Rorke-Adams Science Fair Awards Ceremony.
Earlier this month, the Chester County Intermediate Unit (CCIU) partnered with The Parkesburg Point to host the 34th annual Chester County Science Research Competition (CCSRC). This two-day event provides students in grades 4-5 and 6-12 an opportunity to showcase their passion and talent for science.
Of the 156 projects entered in the Rorke-Adams Fair, 97 met the judges’ criteria of a “winning” project. During last week’s awards ceremony, nearly all 97 participants attended, patiently waiting to see what their hard work and research had earned them.
During the ceremony, each winner received a ribbon based on their category and project ranking. In addition to category winners, the CCIU also distributed special awards, over $700 in value. Special awards were distributed to 14 student winners. High school students who placed first, second or third in their category and middle school students who placed first or second will advance to the Delaware Valley Science Fairs (DVSF) held during the first week of April. The DVSF is split into five divisions: A Fair for 12th grade, B Fair for 11th grade, C Fair for 10th grade, D Fair for 9th grade and E Fair for grades 6-8.
The top winners that will represent Chester County in the DVSF are as follows:
- A Division: Devyn Stek (Microbiology) – Villa Maria Academy High School
- B Division: Arjun Surjawanshi (Engineering) – Unionville High School
- C Division: Remington Yang (Engineering) – Conestoga High School
- D Division: Milan Shah (Engineering) – Conestoga High School
- E Division: Diya Vimal Kumar (Chemistry) – Lionville Middle School
Atharva Singh, an eighth-grade student from Great Valley Middle School, won first place in the zoology category with his project titled, Regeneration in Planaria. When asked to describe his project, Singh said “Planaria can regenerate after being dissected into equal pieces, so I tested how different environmental conditions would affect the rate of regeneration in planaria.”
Singh is one of 70 students who will be competing at the Delaware Valley Science Fairs and will join other middle school participants in the E division.
Villa Maria High School Senior, Devyn Stek, will also be advancing to the DVSF. Stek has been competing in the CCSRC for the last few years. During her junior year, Stek’s project earned first place and best in division for her microbiology project. As a senior, Stek’s project titled, Isolation & Analysis of Malaria’s Mutant DXR Enzyme, also earned her first place in the microbiology category and a best in division award.
When asking Stek what advice she would give to students looking to compete in next year’s science research competition, she said, “Keep pursuing anything that you’re interested in, and do not be afraid to reach out to doctors or professionals; they are more than happy to help you.”
To see a full list of CCSRC winners, please visit www.cciu.org/science-fair.
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