Although we were never together in one physical space, we were always united in science. Thank you class of 2021 for keeping Midwood Science alive and well.
The International Conference on Computer Communications (INFOCOM) is a venue for researchers to present and share innovative contributions in the field of networking and closely related areas. Sponsored by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) INFOCOM is a top-ranked conference on networking in the research community. The 2021 conference lasted from May 10 to May 13. Like all events this academic year it was held virtually, which seems entirely appropriate for a conference on computer networks. Midwood was fortunate to have one student present at this event — the first ever.
|Bintia Keita presented her research project "A controlled, reproducible, and extensible experiment for evaluating the impact of Tor latency". Bintia presented during the workshops on Computer and Networking Experimental Research using Testbeds (CNERT). This work was supported in part by the NYU Tandon School of Engineering Center for K12 STEM Education and was supervised by Mr. Ashutosh Srivastava, Dr. Fraida Fund, and Dr. Shivendra Panwar. You can also read about Bintia’s project on her lab’s blog.|
Saturday, May 1 was the 2021 Annual Meeting of the Metropolitan New York Section of the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) — the second to be presented in all virtual form. This year’s program consisted of 80 presentations highlighting research in mathematics, pedagogy, and technology usage. Presenters included mathematicians and industry professionals, graduate and undergraduate researchers, and high school students — including two from Midwood Science.
|Anthony Nosoff and Taylor Leung presented their proposal "Using Generative Adversarial Networks for the Production of Common Core Algebra Questions". Anthony and Taylor are free agents looking for a machine learning platform to execute their project. If you are a computer scientist and would like to be a mentor to these students, please contact Midwood Science.|
The Terra NYC STEM Fair is the new name for what used to be called the New York City Science and Engineering Fair (NYCSEF). New name, same great competition. 21 Midwood seniors entered this year with 3 advancing to the finals round. Finalists spent the weekend of Saturday and Sunday, March 20 and 21 in video conferences with academic and professional judges from across the globe. All 3 of our finalists received First Awards!
|Fariha Ahmed received a First Award in Chemistry for his project "The effects of several carbonate-based additives on aluminum chloride/propionamide deep eutectic solvents for use in aluminum-ion batteries". Fariha worked under the supervision of Dr. Sophia Suarez and Mr. Domenec Paterno in the Department of Physics at Brooklyn College.|
|Nichole Gutierrez and Tasnia Shadat received a First Award in Behavior and Social Science: Psychology for their project "The effect of culture on adolescent mental health". Nichole and Tasnia worked under the supervision of Dr. Steven Anolik in the Department of Psychology at St. Francis College.|
This summer, unplug and explore STEM with STEM Matters NYC programs Students entering grades 10–12 in September can apply to work with field experts in real-world learning experiences in urban farming, industrial design and manufacturing, glass blowing, computer science, or art and architecture. Apply now for a one or two week program this summer at MakerSpace NYC, New York Historical Society, The Battery Conservancy, The Green-Wood Cemetery, or UrbanGlass. All participants receive a daily MetroCard.
Seats are limited! An online application and teacher reference form is required. Participants are selected by a review committee. Learn more and apply by Friday, April 23. For questions, contact STEMMattersNYC
On Sunday, February 7, 2021 York College hosted the latest (virtual) installment of the NYC Metro Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS). JSHS is a nationwide collection of 48 regional competitions sponsored by the US Department of Defense whose aims are to promote original STEM research at the high school level and to publicly recognize students for outstanding achievement. Four projects by Midwood students were legible this year and one brought home an award.
|Tahreem Sittar and Maham Ghori were Third Place Winners in Behavioral and Social Sciences for their project "Role of uncertainty in governing attraction to food cues". Maham and Tahreem worked under the supervision of Dr. Andrew Delamater in the Department of Psychology at Brooklyn College. The photo on the left shows Maham (left) and Tahreem (right) with one of their experimental subjects, a Long-Evans laboratory rat.|
The Mini-Research Grant Award (MRGA) is an initiative of the New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) that to awards monetary grants to high school students for scientific research projects still in the proposal stage. Four projects by Midwood juniors were selected on Sunday, January 24, 2021— and soon thereafter NYIT sent us a nice check for $1,200.
|☜ Can you tell which of these is real beef? Michelle Yang and Zitong Liu received a grant of $300 for their proposal "Veganism can save the world". Michelle and Zitong are science research free agents attempting to create their own vegan meat substitute. If you are a food scientist and would like to be a mentor to these students, please contact Midwood Science.|
|Lianhao Zheng, Benny Dong, and Jason Wu received a grant of $300 for their proposal "How does gratitude affect one’s quality of sleep and level of depression?" Lianhao, Jason, and Benny work under the supervision of Dr. Steven Anolik in the Department of Psychology at St. Francis College.|
|Bintia Keita received a grant of $300 for her proposal "’Widgets’ potential application for children with autism". Bintia works under the supervision of Ms. Kathleen McDermott and Dr. Scott Fitzgerald in the Department of Technology, Culture and Society at New York University.|
|Anne Mai, Tiffany Zhu, and Xiang Qing (Shannon) Wang received a grant of $300 for their proposal "Sleep deprivation and cognitive effects of memory in American adolescents". Anne, Shannon, and Tiffany work under the supervision of Dr. Denis Pelli in the Department of Psychology at New York University.|
Students who attended the 2020 Major Trends in Modern Cancer Research lectures at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK), or students who are just interested in pursuing careers in the biomedical sciences, should check out their Human Oncology and Pathogenesis Program (HOPP) Summer Student Program. This program gives motivated high school students an opportunity to participate in independent research projects, extracurricular activities, training, and more at MSK. All current high school students from freshman to seniors are eligible to apply.
Typically, the program runs from the end of June to mid-August, but obviously due to COVID-19 restrictions this schedule is subject to change. It is a full-time internship, so students are expected to commit to 40 hours per week, Monday to Friday. Participants are required to complete the full eight weeks of the program from the first day to the last, so do not apply if you know you will be doing any traveling during the summer.
Applications for the 2021 HOPP Summer Student Program will open sometime in December 2020. All interested students should sign up for their mailing list now so that they can receive notifications when the application process goes live.
On Wednesday, November 18, 2020, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center will host its 15th annual Major trends in modern cancer research lecture for high and college students and their teachers. (Members of the public are also welcome to attend.) The event will take place virtually from 6:00–7:30 PM. Registration is required.
This event is a free community education program designed to engage and inspire the next generation of progressive researchers and scientists. MSK has a wide range of opportunities to volunteer at our labs, find mentors at MSK, and potentially join our research community.
One point of extra credit will be awarded to all students who attendon the day of the event and complete this assignment for any one of the speakers. Email your completed (PDF) assignment to Mr. Elert by Friday, November 20.
Craig B. Thompson, President and CEO of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Karuna Ganesh, MD, PhD, Medical Oncologist, and Physician-Scientist
Justin Perry, PhD, and Immunologist
Thomas Norman, PhD, and Systems Biologist
Columbia University Educational Outreach is running a free, one-day, educational program called Splash on Saturday, November 7th from 10 AM to 1 PM and then from 2 PM to 5 PM. This semester, Splash is running over Zoom. With Splash, you can register to take fun, exciting, and unique classes taught by Columbia students to get exposed to material you may have not been exposed to before. You can check their catalog here:
Registration will open Thursday, October 22 at 6 PM EDT, and close on Saturday, October 31st at 11:59 PM. Please note registration is first come first serve. Please register here:
You can choose to take as few or as many classes as you want. Make sure to click "Confirm Registration" after you choose your class(es). If you have any questions or concerns, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
This time with the coronavirus is something like I have never experienced before. This pandemic is affecting everyone in the world and it seems as though it has become our new norm. Everything is different. School has been so stressful in addition to having so much to think about and deal with at home. Prior to the start of the lock down in March, I was battling an illness that left me in severe pain for weeks. I still had to push through with going to school and getting my work done. I still had to do my work in between hospital visits, hours of agony, and complete emotional disposition. My gloomy mood and constant pain makes me unmotivated to do school work and I feel as though I am just floating by day by day. To add fuel to the flames, so many close family members and friends are being affected by COVID-19 and it truly has become draining. My cousin has been in a coma, and no one can go see him due to hospital visitation rules. This time has been depressing. I am so distracted with what is going on personally, that it is truly hard to focus academically. I am persevering everyday to get through everything. But it has been hard.
Naffisat Atanda (Class of 2020)
Due to the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, schools in New York City have been shut down since March 16. It has become evident that students have been struggling to adjust to online classes. Teachers are trying their best to be more lenient because they are aware of the troubles Covid-19 has brought upon families. I can confirm that for many of my peers these are hard times. The sudden change in schedule due to Covid-19 has had a negative impact on everyone. Students are finding it hard to wake up early, finish their assignments on time, and deal with personal problems. As a result, school assignments and tests have become hard to handle. The growing pile of assignments due at 11:59 pm causes anxiety and adds stress to an already bad situation.
In order to deal with the stress, my peers and I worked together to create a schedule that is similar to school. It is important to keep a good routine to stay healthy and productive. We wake up by 8-10 am, eat breakfast, and write everything that needs to be done during the day in a planner. The assignments are spread out throughout the day and in between other responsibilities. When a student cannot finish an assignment, we encourage them to submit it as soon as possible and not to worry too much. If a situation is very hard to handle, we encourage them to email their teachers and try to get as much help as possible. These times are hard and in order to get through this, we need to try our best to help one another. If you need help, please do not hesitate to reach out!
Anum Jabeen (Class of 2020)
The 2020 Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) has gone virtual and is happening now. There is new programming everyday from May 18–22. The full schedule is online now. View Finalist's projects from around the world or watch live panel discussions and interviews. Anyone with an interest who registers is welcome to attend.
I would like to recommend three, highly relevant events for the juniors and sophomores in science research. All are scheduled for Thursday, May 21.
24 seconds: Did you know that everyday products such as plastic bottles or plastic bags are extremely harmful to the environment? These conventional plastics can take hundreds of years to decompose and although many people try to recycle, a huge amount of plastic ends up in landfills or the surrounding environment. There those plastics stay polluting the environment and harming organisms both on land and in the oceans. In order to keep the earth, our home, clean we have to start putting more effort into using less products containing these harmful plastics. For example, why not use reusable water bottles instead of the disposable ones? Or, why not use cloth bags or paper bags instead of the plastic alternatives?
7 words: Reduce plastic waste by using sustainable products.
Oliwia Dankiw (Class of 2020)
Dear friends of Midwood Science,
Today would have been the 29th annual Brooklyn College Science Research Day — but you know how things have been going lately. This day has always been special to us at Midwood Science because (somewhat obviously) we are across the street from Brooklyn College, but also because (and to me more significantly) it represented the end of the science research "season".
Science has competitions much like sports do. If there's some way Midwood Science students can show off their skills, you know they are going to do it: Siemens, STS, St. Joe's, JSHS, NYCSEF, Teptu, ACT-SO, ISEF. It's a busy year full of significant events. Brooklyn College Science Research Day was our rock that anchored the research "season". In this year of 2020 we lost that rock.
Here's a string of photos from Brooklyn College Science Research Days past. These were days away from the daily grind that always felt special. When the weather was nice, it felt extra special (that and they always fed us really well).
I would like to thank the following scientists at Brooklyn College for giving Midwood Science students an opportunity to participate in the research they do this year — no matter how short that opportunity might have been.
I work with Dr. Frank Grasso in the Biomimetic and Cognitive Robotics (BCR) Lab at Brooklyn College. In this lab, we study the behavior of invertebrate animals such as fiddler crabs, axolotls, octopuses along with other animals such as monk parakeets. Lab members also participate in various robotic experiments related to animal behavior. I specifically work with fiddler crabs and their social behavior. Before COVID-19, all members of the lab were required to attend general meetings. These meetings were held to ensure that everyone was aware of the changes made in the lab and the tasks that needed to be done next week were assigned. I would attend the lab regularly and spend approximately 10–15 hours each week. It was a friendly and informative environment.
In addition, group meetings related to our projects were also held to give researchers feedback on their projects. Although schools and colleges have been shut down due to COVID-19, the BCR lab is still active since we were able to transition from our physical lab onto a virtual platform. All the animal systems that were present in the lab were shut down due to the pandemic. The axolotls that we studied in the lab are now safe with Dr. Grasso who now takes care of them at his house. With the abundance of data that was observed and recorded in our lab, we have no shortage of work to get done. The use of resources such as DropBox, email, and Zoom meetings for communication is a must. Due to everyone's dedication to the lab, this transition has gone smoothly.
Mariyum Jahan (Class of 2020)
The quarantine has caused many to become stressed and anxious. Lowering your stress levels means maintaining good health practices, therefore it is important to take care of your physicsl and mental health. Stress is even more prevalent today and to prevent it from becoming a health issue, it is important to distract yourself. Whether it is participating in baking or TikTok challenges or napping for about an hour a day, facetiming friends, or cooking with your family. You can clean or decorate your room too. Change things up in the house.
It is important to get rid of the stressors. Watch the news less often or at least play it in the background. Take up a new hobby and have a Netflix party with your friends and family. Also, make sure to at least exercise 20 minutes a day; you can incorporate exercise into your routine. Do squats or burpees while you are cleaning tall surfaces, do the side plank when you are cleaning under your bed, or do a yoga pose anytime you are warming something up in the microwave. Exercise doesn't have to be boring.
Tanzena Haque (Class of 2020)