Annual Meeting and Competition

2012

The 2012 NC Student Academy of Science Annual Meeting and State Competition was held Friday, March 23rd. The keynote presentation was by Dr. David Haase, Professor of Physics at North Carolina State University (NCSU) and founder of The Science House, for K-12 outreach to promote hands-on, inquiry based learning in science and math. Dr. Haase is the recipient of the Alexander Holladay Medal for Excellence, the highest honor thet NCSU can award to a faculty member. For the 141 student researchers, their sponsors and families, it was an extraordinary opportunity to hear about science and research from a distinguished scientist in the tradition of other recent keynote speakers at the State Meeting, including Peter Agre, JoAnn Burkholder, Joe DeSimone, Erich Jarvis, Mary Schweitzer and Oliver Smities. There is more information available about Dr. Haase at http://www.physics.ncsu.edu/people/faculty_haase.html.

The students made 105 presentations of their research. First, second and third place in each category were awarded gold, silver and bronze medals, respectively. First place winners additionally received an invitation to travel expenses-paid to present their research at the American Junior Academy of Science meeting at Vancouver British Columbia February, 2012. 15 students accepted that invitation and made the trip to represent NCSAS and the State of North Carolina, the largest delegation we have ever sent to that meeting. Other awards included U.S. Navy awards and recognition by the state chapter of the American Chemical Society and the Stockholm Junior Water Prize Competition. In addition, the Charles Lytle Scholarship was presented to Jordan Lancaster. All presenting students received the new conference tee shirt, designed by Mr. Juan Scivally, Art Instructor at NCSSM. In addition to the presenters, more than 20 middle and high school students attended as observers. We expect to see most of them back next year as presenters.

The competition was judged by approximately 50 active and retired professionals from state agencies, educational institutions, and businesses in the Triangle. Students were given the chance to meet with the judges over dinner after the competition to get additional feedback about their projects and learn about the science interests of the judges. Two teachers were recognized with NCSAS Teacher Recognition Awards: Barrington Ross and Bethany Shepherd.

Elections were held to choose student officers for 2012-13. High School President-elect Emmie Cassell becomes President. Sam Christensen was chosen as High School President-elect, and the new Middle School President is Ronak Bhagia.