The Home of Midwood Science Research

And the winners of the 2018 Midwood Science Fair are…

Posted on Friday, June 8, 2018 by for Awards, Science Fair.

1st Place

Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Alyssa Kattan
The Ability of Chiral Glucose Molecules to Rotate the Plane of Polarized Light
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Diyora Mullaeva & Sally Gao
The effect of climate on the sustainability of solar and battery powered cars

2nd Place

Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Naffisat Atanda
What Birth Order Says about your Average
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Duha Mousa
Conformity in Midwood High School
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Sammi Lin & Vivian Chong
The Effect of Breaks on Learning New Information

3rd Place

Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Jaylene Cruz
RFID: Blocking Radio Frequency Identification Signals
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Serena Duran & Victoria Habbchy
The Effect of Substrate Concentration on the Activity of the Enzyme Catalase

Honorable Mention

Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Nadzeya Fliaha
The Relative Probability of Banking a Basketball
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Sarah Sookoo & Idrees Ilahi
pH and Arsenic Correlation in Baby Formula
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Jubaida Mehak & Zahra Mehdi
Fermentation on the Production of Biofuels
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Jessica Lin & Lameya Rahman
Corrosion of Steel and pH
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Noor Mohammad & Alana Neria
Ladybugs vs. X-ray Radiation
Traditional photo of the award winner holding their trophy standing in front of their poster board
Tanisa Rahman & Nolani Carter
Makeshift Polarimeter: Chiral Molecules and Angle of Polarization

Science fair demonstrates students’ excellence

Posted on Wednesday, June 6, 2018 by for Media, Science Fair.

The stage was set for sophomore researchers as they presented their projects for all research students to see during the annual science fair.

Even though the science fair was for the sophomores of AP Capstone, it was mandatory for juniors and seniors who had previously taken AP Capstone to attend.

Juniors and seniors had a job to fulfill. The job of utmost importance was that of a judge. Some students prepared the tables so that food could be placed on them.

"The science fair was the biggest ever," said Mr. Glenn Elert, the research teacher. "We had more seniors this year than last year. We had more alumni than ever before. Normally teachers are substitute judges. We had so many judges that we didn't need any teachers to judge."

Not all projects are graded the same. Depending on whether or not they worked alone or with someone else, the total points someone could receive differed. For example, if you worked alone, the presentation would be scored out of 60 points. However, if you worked with a partner, the presentation would be scored out of 70 points.

The topics that students chose weren't just random topics. Some students chose a certain topic because of their love for a certain class or the topic itself.

"I have AP Chemistry, and I want to put what I learn into use. I want to show them that AP Chemistry matters," said Alyssa Kattan '20, who did her project on the ability of chiral glucose molecules to polarize light.

Ihtsham Chaudhry said '20, "I had great interest in my science fair topic on the regeneration process of planarian worms, and it helped me develop new knowledge on a planarian worm that I didn't know before."

While some students decided to work in pairs, others decided to work alone.

"I decided to work alone. I am kind of a perfectionist. By working alone, it is easy to maintain my standards," said Kattan.

Jennifer Wu '20 said, "I find that when I work alone, I exert more choice on what I want to put on the board."

Not all students had the equipment needed to do the project. As a result, they turned to the school for the necessary equipment.

"It was a bit difficult because I didn't have the right equipment," said Jennifer Wu. "I didn't have an electronic balance net and beakers. So I did the experiment at school. All I had to do was ask the science department so that I could do the work in school."

Getting the presentation ready for the science fair wasn't an easy job. It required a lot of time and effort. Luckily, AP Capstone, including its teachers and students, were there to help each other out.

"AP Capstone is a phenomenal program that allow students to pursue scientific interests that many other schools cannot provide," said Armin Pasukanovic '20.

Kathy Mania wearing orange traffic safety cones Group photo of seniors and teachers Alumni judges from the classes of 2014 and 2016

Kattan said, "I have never done a presentation for a science fair before. Teachers and students from research helped me navigate the process step by step. They were always there for when I had questions to ask."

The judges were very impressed by the work sophomores put into their presentations.

"I think the presentations they made are very advanced. Their presentations have a very meaningful purpose and can help change the world. Sophomores, even though they are only 14 or 15, have a lot of potential. They are also very organized," said Neslani Johnson '19.

Bareera Abid '19 said, "It was interesting to see what sophomores did. It was new and unique."

The science fair didn't consist of only Midwood students and staff. Midwood alumni were also there. Some of them were even judges for the science fair.

"This is my first time in two years coming back to Midwood," said Laila Akallal, an alumni who graduated from Midwood in 2016. "It is great to see how much the research program has grown."

Written by Cindy Wang and Rubhiyah Chaudhry (Class of 2019).
This article originally appeared in the June 2018 edition of Argus.

Hornets take home prizes in Brooklyn College science fair

Posted on Wednesday, June 6, 2018 by for Brooklyn College, Media.

After a lot of research, high school and college students presented their findings at Brooklyn College Science day held on May 4 at the Brooklyn College Student Center.

Every spring, students from different communities gather to celebrate Science Day. From high school students to graduate students in universities. The Brooklyn College website states that students competed and showcased 125 projects in 14 different fields of science with over 50 faculty members as judges. Some of the fields included Psychology, Biology, Robotics, and Chemistry. In each field first, second, and third place is awarded to students with the best project.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said, "This gives us an opportunity to contemplate the importance of scholarship in the science. All of our students deserve a robust and inspiring STEM education. Not only to prepare for jobs of the future, but develop skills to make them better students, employees, and citizens." 

Seven Midwood students from the Biomimetic and Cognitive Robotics Laboratory (BCR Lab) who worked with professor and Psychology teacher Dr. Frank Grasso, presented their projects. These students are Kevin Chen '19, Larissa Brijmohan '19, Fizza Nayab '19, Annabel Xie '19, Aushna Saleem '18, Hafsa Fatima '18, Nila Mirza '18 and Soanne Saint Victor '18. The students were supervised by Mr. Glenn Elert and Ms. Susan Katzoff.

"It was an amazing opportunity to present in front of college professors and being able to experience public speaking as a junior," said Nayab. She presented a team project with Brijmohan on how Monk Parakeets (Myiopsitta monachus) influence conspecific behaviors.

Each of these students was judged by two judges and were asked many questions, such as how the results from their project can benefit society.

Group photo under a flowering tree
Susan Katzoff (teacher), Fizza Nayab, Glenn Elert (teacher), Hafsa Fatima, Soanne Saint Victor, Joyce Chow, Aushna Saleem, Naila Mirza, Ivy Li, Kevin Chen, Beien Lin, Kathy Mania, Larissa Brijmohan, Annable Xie, Nursat Jahan

"I was very nervous while presenting to the judges and the people that came to view my project, but I was very surprised when the judges didn't really ask me many questions," said Xie. She presented a project that determined whether Monk Parakeets had a preference for the residential area or the urban area.

After all the presentations were judged, the scores were tallied up while the presenters and faculty enjoyed an amazing lunch. Midwood took 2 out of 3 wins for the high school division breaking a clean sweep streak (2014-2017). The first place winner was Chen who presented his project called "Aggression on the beach: Crowding increases aggression levels on fiddler crabs (Uca pugilator) colonies."

"I was shocked and was really thrilled when my name was announced," said Chen. "My hard work and patience paid off and I thank Dr. Frank Grasso and the BCR lab members for helping me gather my data."

Fatima earned second place with a project called "The effect of temperature on the frequency of vocalization of Myiopsitta Monachus." The third place winner was Kemal Aziz '18, from Staten Island Tech, with the project called "Cooling through quantum mechanics: Magnon-based description of magnetocaloric effects in La-Fe-Si, CoMnSi, and gadolinium."

Mr. Glenn Elert stated, "Brooklyn College Day is always good. Midwood constantly performs and it's nice to meet with other professors from different high schools and colleges. My advice for students who want to participate next year is to just do it. Give it a shot." 

As for the future, these research students are continuing their projects and building on to them with help of their lab professors and research teacher Mr. Elert, so that they can be ready to present at the NYCSEF in 2019.

"A student is not going to perform well in competitions if he/she just does a presentation, they will get better by gaining experience with real judges, where they ask you questions and other procedures like in the real event," said Mr. Elert.

Written by Nursat Jahan and Daniel Gaft (Class of 2019).
This article originally appeared in the June 2018 edition of Argus.

Young scientists sweep ACT-SO

Posted on Wednesday, June 6, 2018 by for ACT-SO, Media.

For the first time, Midwood High School entered the New York City Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics (ACT-SO) and won a medal in each of the five categories: STEM, humanities, performing arts, fine arts, and business. This year's ACT-SO awards were announced on Monday, May 7, at St. Francis College in Downtown Brooklyn.

Previously known as the "Olympics of the Mind," ACT-SO is a youth program of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Its goal is to give recognition to students who demonstrate academic, scientific, and artistic achievement. Those who participate in the competition must enter in a project under the five categories.

The winners received medals and cash awards starting at $300.

"This year's competition was great," said Mr. Glenn Elert, a physics and research teacher here at Midwood. "We did really well."

He and Ms. Susan Katzoff, a chemistry and research teacher, served as mentors and offered the students help with their posters, presentation skills, and paperwork.

While only 15 students entered the competition, Midwood won a total of 16 medals: five gold, three silver, and eight bronze. Those who won gold, such as Rana Mohamed '19, Kiandra Peart '19, and Calvin Huynh '18, will be going on to participate in Nationals this July. It will be a three day event taking place at the Henry B. González Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas where they will be competing against over 8,000 students from other states.

"I am extremely excited for Nationals because it'll be a new experience and I will get the opportunity to meet people from all over the country who are also researching and doing amazing things," said Mohamed.

Kiandra Peart
Kiandra Peart and her entrepreneurship project "Kustoms by Ki".

Peart earned the most medals: a gold in Entrepreneurship for her self-made business Kustoms By Ki, another gold in Poetry for her piece titled "The Nation", and a bronze medal in sculpture.

For Peart's independent business, Kustoms By Ki, she customizes various things such as sneakers, wallets, and purses. To enter this project into the competition, she had to create an 18 page business plan to show marketing strategies such as inventory, cash flow, and two year projections. She then presented the display of her work to a judge who graded her on her content.

"I know the competition will be tougher, but I'm ready for it," said Peart. "Going to Nationals makes me feel like all my hard work paid off."

Mohamed brought home a gold in Engineering for her project of decreasing the energy consumption within a robotic system with the implementation of an energy monitoring system. She used two types of robotic systems: a two degree of freedom robotic arm that she varied the voltage and frequency on to see how those conditions affected the energy consumption, and a passive walker that she will use to vary the stop length and step frequency to see how those conditions also affect the energy consumption.

"Winning gold was very rewarding because I felt recognized for all my hard work," said Mohamed. "I worked on my research for over ten months."

Huynh entered his project, "Conditions that promote the sub-cellular migration of nucleolin (NCL) to the cell surface," under the category of Microbiology. The nucleolin is a protein that migrates to the cell surface in cases of cancer, HIV, and infection. In his project, he tried to find the mechanisms that were responsible for allowing the protein (nucleolin) to migrate. He found that only full-length, non-cleaved variations of the protein are allowed to migrate to the cell surface.

"I'm excited to be going to Nationals in Texas and I'm proud to represent NYC Microbiology," said Huynh. "But I'm also a bit nervous because I know that competitions on the National level are notoriously difficult."

Still group photo
2018 ACT-SO Gold Medallists: Kiandra Peart, Calvin Huynh, and Saba Iqbal on the far right.

As he conducted this research, he was supervised by Dr. Anjana D. Saxena in the Department of Biology at Brooklyn College.

"Winning gold was great because it really was a chance for me to gain some recognition for my research," Huynh added.

Saba Iqbal '18 won a gold medal in the Earth & Space science category for her project on indicating an atmospheric mercury pollution source using moss as a biomonitor. She conducted her project at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, where she began to intern for her research project around November of 2016. There, her research mentor, Dr. Erin Mann, helped her throughout the two years she was there and made sure everything went smoothly.

"I honestly didn't think I would win because there were so many other great projects there as well," said Iqbal. "Nevertheless, I was really happy."

Although Iqbal received first prize, she will not be attending Nationals due to college orientations and summer classes.

"I'd like more people to participate next year," said Mr. Elert. "Anyone should enter."

Written by Mohima Oishe and Pretee Amin (Class of 2019).
This article originally appeared in the June 2018 edition of Argus.

2018 Science Fair Abstract Book (and more from the past)

Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2018 by for Science Fair.

2010 abstract book 2018 abstract book 2014 abstract book
2011 abstract book 2015 abstract book
2012 abstract book 2016 abstract book
2013 abstract book 2016 abstract book

All seniors need to meet with Mr. Elert for an exit meeting

Posted on Tuesday, May 29, 2018 by for Seniors.

 
World Science Festival red logo   Email proof of service at the World Science Festival by 10:30 AM Monday, June 4. Email photos of yourself working each day and your volunteer itinerary.
 
A cabinet full of small keys   Return your drawer key on Monday, June 4. You may continue to use your drawer up until Monday, June 11 but you may not lock it. All drawers must be cleaned out by 3:30 PM Monday, June 11.
 
A blank, uncolored service sheet   Bring your 3rd marking period service log with you on Monday, June 4. Bring it even if it is blank.

All juniors need to meet with their supervising teacher for an exit meeting

Posted on Tuesday, May 29, 2018 by for Juniors.

Airplane emergency card exit cartoon   ☜ All juniors need to meet with their supervising teacher during a mutually available free period on Wednesday, June 6 for an exit meeting. Bring your lab log. Topics for discussion include spring semester grades and summer research plans.   MetroCard Man at 2011 Maker Faire with 2 Midwood students
 
☞ Summer school MetroCards will be arranged for students that need them. Have your mentor contact me stating that you will be working in their lab over the summer. MetroCards will be available in the first or second week of July and will expire in the middle of August.

One week to the Midwood Science Fair

Posted on Thursday, May 24, 2018 by for Science Fair.

Add to Calendar
Thursday
31

The Midwood Science Fair is almost upon us. Thursday, May 31, 2018 will be here before you know it. Juniors and seniors meet in the Library period 9. Alumni and other registered celebrity judges show up around 2:45–3:00 (a little early is better than a little late). Sophomores be in your assigned spot by the start of period 11 (your board will be waiting for you). Everyone be prepared for an afternoon of science and celebration.

Students attend STEAM conference

Posted on Wednesday, May 23, 2018 by for Media.

Midwood students joined other schools in District 22 on April 27 to learn about everything science as well as showcasing their scientific accomplishments during the third annual, "Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) Symposium."

STEAM is a movement that combines all the elements it represents to foster critical thinking, problem-solving and collaboration by applying all the disciplines together. Previously, STEAM was deemed STEM, however as the 21st century emerged, art and design became influential and transformed our economy as much as technology and science did in the previous century. According to Slate’s article, "STEAM Rising" by Anna Feldman, "STEAM says we can be better engineers by learning how to think artistically, and we can re-engage artists with science by letting them see how STEM can work in the arts. It’s infinitely more exciting, especially in an increasingly interdisciplinary and digital world." The addition of arts to the movement enhances the objective of success in the scientific fields due to children having greater imaginations and widespread ideas due to their artistic side.

The symposium was held in Brooklyn Borough Hall and held many different events. Superintendent Michael Prayor made opening remarks followed by two keynote addresses by Edward R. Murrow student Ebonie Reavis ’18 and Yonee Thevenot from STEM Kids NYC. The rest of the day was filled with gallery walks of student projects, live performances, panel discussions, and hands-on activities. "Black Girls Code", a non-profit organization that introduces programming and coding to young women of color so they can become builders of technological innovation and of their own futures, hosted one of these activities.

This was a symposium highlighting the power of women in STEAM, thus having many activities circulating about women’s role in the sciences. Many lady Hornets attended.

Aushna Saleem ’18 stated, "The symposium was really fun and inspiring. It was really encouraging to see successful women presenting their success in their field as well as inspiring young women like to do the same. Presenting my project was also very uplifting. The judges were almost all teachers, and they were very nice and gave me advice pertaining to my field."

Assistant principal of science, Ms. Jenessa Kornacker states, "I thought it was a great afternoon. It was a good opportunity for the students because it let them further their interest and help pursue their careers. It was also a great place for networking. Meeting people with the same goals and ambitions as you can be really beneficial."

According to the American Association of Medical Dosimetrists (AAMD), "studies have shown that up to 80% of jobs are never advertised—they are filled by word of mouth." To obtain opportunities in a career, one has to develop relationships and connections with other people in the same field. The way of doing this is going to events like this symposium and meeting similar people.

Midwood students performed well in comparison to other schools in the district.

Robotics teacher Mrs. Lisa Ali stated, "It was cool to see the robotics programs in other schools and how their mind worked. It made me realize how advanced Midwood’s programs are."

Written by Daniel Gaft (Class of 2019).
This article originally appeared in the May 2018 edition of Argus.

Team NYC at 2018 Intel ISEF Public Viewing

Posted on Monday, May 21, 2018 by for ISEF.

Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster
Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster
One student standing in front of each edge of their poster Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster
Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster Student standing in front of the left edge of their poster

Team NYC collects over $22,800 in prize money at the 2018 Intel ISEF

Posted on Sunday, May 20, 2018 by for Awards, ISEF.

Team NYC sent 14 students off to the 2018 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania last week. By noon Friday, they had collectively amassed over $22,800 in prize money. (I have to use the word "over" since some of the special awards do not have well-defined monetary values.) The awards are distributed over two days — Thursday evening is for Special Awards, sponsored by a variety of professional organizations, and Friday morning is for Grand Awards, sponsored mostly by the Intel Foundation.

The Intel ISEF is the largest pre-college science competition in the world. Each year, approximately 1,800 high school students from more than 75 countries, regions, and territories are awarded the opportunity to showcase their independent research and compete for $4 million in prizes.

Overhead view of a portion of the convention hall Overhead view of a portion of the convention hall Overhead view of a portion of the convention hall

Every year, millions of students worldwide compete in local and school-sponsored science fairs. Only the best projects form these affiliated fairs are accepted into the Intel ISEF. Students in the five boroughs compete in the New York City Science and Engineering Fair (NYCSEF), a joint venture between the City University of New York and the New York City Department of Education. NYCSEF is itself a large event, with something like 450 projects passing the rigorous standards of the Scientific Review Committee. NYCSEF is so huge that it has to be broken down into two events: a preliminary round and a finals round.

Everyone who attends the Intel ISEF is automatically a winner. Walking through the doors of the convention center into the project space is a reward unto itself for months or even years of toil. An Intel ISEF is five days of practice, competition, entertainment, excitement, rewards, and new friends. What Team NYC accomplished in the week of May 13–18 is not entirely measurable. But for those of you who like hard data, here are the awards we brought back.

First Award of $3,000

  • Ella Feiner (Cellular and Molecular Biology) Horace Mann School
    Project: Exploring Posterior Growth in D. rerio Using a Live Cell Cycle Biosensor.
    Ella's project was declared Best of Category in Cellular and Molecular Biology, which comes with an additional $5,000. She also received an all-expense paid four week trip and scholarship to the Bessie Lawrence International Summer Science Institute from the American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science.

Second Award of $1,500

  • Suha Hussain (Systems Software) Queens High School for the Sciences at York College
    Project: A New Method for the Exploitation of Speech Recognition Systems.
    Suha received four special awards: a Fourth Award of $500 from the Association for Computing Machinery, a $1,500 Data Award from GoDaddy, a $1,000 Second "Science Security" Award from the National Security Agency Research Directorate, and a $1,800 STEM Cloud Award in Systems Software from the Shanghai STEM Cloud Center.
  • Eeshan Tripathii (Environmental Engineering) The Dalton School
    Project: The Air We Breathe: Reducing Health Risks by Improving IAQ: An Innovative, Smart, and Responsive Ductless System Optimized by Stochastic Simulation and Machine Learning.
    Eeshan also received a $1,000 Thermo Fisher PPI Award "for driving Practical Process Improvement in science".

Third Award of $1,000

  • Timur (Timmy) Ibragimov (Physics and Astronomy) Staten Island Technical High School
    Project: Stochasticity on Astronomical Scales: A Half-life formalism for Predicting the Disruption of Small-N Body Systems.
    Timmy also received a $2,500 First Award from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
  • Vera Zarubin (Materials Science) Bronx High School of Science
    Project: Novel Fabrication of Organic Multifunctional Materials via Magnetic Alignment

Fourth Award of $500

  • Brendon Choy (Chemistry) Hunter College High School
    Project: Cutting off Cancer: Design, Analysis, and Synthesis of Novel Vascular Disrupting Agents.
  • Ryan Bose Roy (Translational Medical Science) Hunter College High School
    Project: Novel Warning Mechanism for At-Risk Stroke and Epilepsy Patients Through Detection of Harmful Levels of Cortisol.
  • Alexandria Ang (Earth and Environmental Sciences) Bronx High School of Science
    Project: A Destructive Invader: How Rising Atmospheric CO2 Is Aiding Noctiluca scintillans in Taking Over Tropical Oceans.

Special Awards

  • Brian Wu & Bi Tian (Jack) Yuan (Physics and Astronomy) Horace Mann School & Columbia Preparatory School
    Project: Finding the Next Tatooine: Discovery of Giant Planets, Brown Dwarfs, and the First-Ever Circumbinary Planet Using Doppler Spectroscopy.
    Brian and Jack each received a Renewable Tuition Scholarship Award to West Virginia University.
  • Phoebe Yates (Behavioral and Social Sciences) Institute for Collaborative Education
    Project: The Impact of Emotionally Targeted Branding on Social Behavior.
    Pheobe also received a Certificate of Honorable Mention and a one-year student membership with the American Psychological Association.

Participants

  • Aushna Saleem (Animal Sciences) Midwood High School at Brooklyn College
    Project: The Effects of Monk Parakeet Age on Sociality.
  • Ari Firester (Environmental Engineering) Hunter College High School
    Project: Desalinating Water Using Electric Fields.
  • Hanna Yip (Robotics and Intelligent Machines) The Spence School
    Project: A Fast and Accurate Open-Source Solo Musical Instrument Classifier.

Team NYC arrives in Pittsburgh for ISEF 2018

Posted on Thursday, May 17, 2018 by for ISEF.

The Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) is the largest international pre-college science competition on the planet. Approximately 1,800 high school students from 75 countries, regions, and territories are awarded the opportunity to showcase their independent research and compete for $4 million in prizes. The 2018 ISEF is being held once again on two floors of the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The 14 students in Team NYC were selected from an original 450 during the New York City Science and Engineering Fair (NYCSEF) in March. Aushna Saleem is Midwood's contribution to this outstanding group of young people.

ISEF is a week long event starting with one day each for registration, setup, and practice, one long day of judging, and another day of public viewing. There are so many awards given at ISEF that it takes two days to present them all. Special Awards are given out on Thursday, May 17 in the evening and Grand Awards are given out on Friday, May 18 in the morning.

Aushna pointing at her name on the wall Group photo in front of the Intel ISEF logo Three yellow steel bridges spanning the Allegheny River

Group photo with Pittsburgh skyline in the background

Aushna pointing to her poster in front of three seated spectators DJ Ravidrums on the giant screen before a large audience Pittsburgh skyline with the Allegheny River in the foreground

No clean sweep at BC Sci Day, but 2 out of 3 ain’t bad

Posted on Tuesday, May 8, 2018 by for Awards, Brooklyn College.

Midwood Science won two of the three awards in the high school division at Brooklyn College's annual Science Research Day on Friday, May 4, 2018 ending a four year long streak of clean sweeps (2014, 2015, 2016, 2017). Kevin Chen and Hafsa Fatima placed first and second, respectively. Both students worked under the supervision of long-time friend of Midwood Science, Dr. Frank Grasso in the Biomimetic and Cognitive Robotics (BCR) lab at Brooklyn College. Third place went to Staten Island Tech student Kemal Aziz, who worked under the supervision of Dr. Karl Sandeman in the Department of Physics at Brooklyn College. Both Dr. Grasso and Dr. Sandeman have mentored projects good enough to attend the Intel International Science and Engineering Festival (ISEF) — Dr. Grasso in 2018 and Dr. Sandeman in 2016.

Brooklyn College Science Research Day is an annual event that showcases the work done by students with research mentors at Brooklyn College and other CUNY schools. This year, around 125 students presented their research across 14 categories in STEM, with over 50 faculty members and students from the college serving as judges. First, second, and third place prizes were awarded in each of the three divisions: high school, undergraduate and graduate.

Four people in a rowGlenn Elert (teacher), Kevin Chen, Hafsa Fatima, Susan Katzoff (teacher) Two people, poster, two peopleGlenn Elert (teacher), Dr. Frank Grasso (professor), Fizza Nayab, Larissa Brijmohan
  1. Kevin Chen, a junior from Midwood, won first place in the high school division for his project "Aggression on the beach: Crowding increases aggression levels in fiddler crab (Uca pugilator) colonies." Kevin worked under the supervision of Dr. Frank Grasso in the Biomimetic and Cognitive Robotics (BCR) lab at Brooklyn College.
  2. Hafsa Fatima, a senior from Midwood, won second place in the high school division for her project "The effect of temperature on the frequency of vocalization of Myiopsitta monachus". Hafsa also worked under the supervision of Dr. Frank Grasso in the Biomimetic and Cognitive Robotics (BCR) lab at Brooklyn College.
  3. Kemal Aziz, a senior from Staten Island Tech, won third place in the high school division for his project "Cooling through quantum mechanics: Magnon-based description of magneto caloric effects in La-Fe-Si, CoMnSi, and gadolinium". Kemal worked under the supervision of Dr. Karl Sandeman in the Department of Physics at Brooklyn College.

Group photo under a flowering tree
Susan Katzoff (teacher), Fizza Nayab, Glenn Elert (teacher), Hafsa Fatima, Soanne Saint Victor, Joyce Chow, Aushna Saleem, Naila Mirza, Ivy Li, Kevin Chen, Beien Lin, Kathy Mania, Larissa Brijmohan, Annable Xie, Nursat Jahan

Midwood Science students collect 3 gold medals at ACT-SO, Kiandra Peart wins gold in Entrepreneurship and Poetry

Posted on Monday, May 7, 2018 by for ACT-SO, Awards.

Saturday, April 21, 2018 marked the 30th time the three New York City branches of the NAACP sponsored ACT-SO — the Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological, and Scientific Olympics. ACT-SO is an "Olympics of the Mind" with up to 32 different categories and chances to win medals and cash prizes. This year's New York City ACT-SO was once again held at George Wingate High School — it's home for most of the past 30 events. Awards were announced on Monday, May 7, 2018 at St. Francis College in Downtown Brooklyn.

2018 marks the first time Midwood High School entered and medalled in each of the five major categories: STEM, humanities, fine arts, performing arts, and business. Kiandra Peart lead the team, earning a pair of gold medals in Entrepreneurship and Poetry and a bronze medal in Sculpture. Calvin Huynh, Rana Mohamed, and Saba Iqbal brought home gold in Microbiology, Engineering, and Earth & Space Sciences, respectively. Soanne Saint Victor earned bronze in Biology and Instrumental Classical. The total medal count for Midwood was 5 gold, 3 silver, and 8 bronze.

Kiandra, Calvin, and Rana will be competing in the National ACT-SO July 13–15. The National ACT-SO is a part of the NAACP Annual Convention, which is being held this year at the Henry B. González Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas. With over 8000 delegates expected to attend Kiandra, Calvin, and Rana are sure to have an exciting time.

Still group photo

Gold Medal Winners

  • Kiandra Peart won a gold medal in Entrepreneurship for her independent business "Kustoms By Ki", a second gold medal in Poetry for her composition entitled "The Nation", and a bronze medal in sculpture.
  • Calvin Huynh won a gold medal in Microbiology for his project "Conditions that promote the sub-cellular migration of nucleolin (NCL) to the cell surface." Calvin worked under the supervision of Dr. Anjana D. Saxena in the Department of Biology at Brooklyn College.
  • Rana Mohamed won a gold medal in Engineering for her project "Energy monitoring systems for mobile robotic systems." Rana worked under the supervision of Dr. Joo H. Kim in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at NYU Tandon School of Engineering.
  • Saba Iqbal won a gold medal in Earth & Space Sciences for her project "Indicating an atmospheric mercury pollution source using moss as a biomonitor." Saba worked under the supervision of Dr. Anthony Carpi and Dr. Erin Mann in the Department of Sciences at John Jay College.

Silver Medal Winners

  • Jennifer Duong won a silver medal in Chemistry for her project "Loading lauric acid into electrospun polystyrene nanofibers." Jennifer worked under the supervision of Dr. Ping Lu and Ms. Rawan Ghaban in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Long Island University.
  • Sabina Kubayeva won a silver medal in Medicine & Health for a project she completed with her partner Elizabeth Joseph entitled "Layer-specific decreases in hippocampal PKMζ protein in a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease." Elizabeth and Sabina worked under the supervision of Dr. Todd Sacktor and Dr. Panayiotis Tsokas in the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology at SUNY Downstate Medical Center.
  • Benjamin Nguyen won a silver medal in Computer Science for his project "Climate controlled Raspberry Pi Model B video looper via temperature sensor and PC fan controlled by Arduino Uno." Benjamin worked under the supervision of Dr. Xiaohai (Richard) Li in the Department of Computer Engineering Technology at the New York City College of Technology.

Animated group photo

Bronze Medal Winners

  • Soanne Saint Victor won a bronze medal in Biology for her project "The nest composition of monk parakeets." Soanne worked under the supervision of Dr. Frank Grasso in the Department of Psychology at Brooklyn College. She also won a second bronze medal in Instrumental Classical for a performance on the steel pan.
  • Hebah Jihad won a bronze medal in Biology for her project "The effect of symmetry on the perception of beauty." Hebah worked under the supervision of Mr. Glenn Elert in the Physical Science Department at Midwood High School.
  • Albina Kukic & Wendy Lliguichuzhca won a bronze medal in Medicine & Health for their project "Altruism in adolescence measured by empathy, parental influence, peer influence, and societal influence." Albina and Wendy worked under the supervision of Professor Emeritus Dr. Uwe Gielen and Dr. Sung Hun Kim in the Department of Psychology at St. Francis College.
  • Kathy Mania won a bronze medal in Earth & Space Sciences for a project she completed with her partner Beien Lin entitled "Soil structure and heavy metals in engineered soils for stormwater management." Kathy and Beien worked under the supervision of Dr. Zhongqi (Joshua) Cheng and Dr. Maha Deeb Collet in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Brooklyn College.
  • Naila Mirza won a bronze medal in Biology for her project "Effect of season on the group size of the Myiopsitta monachus." Naila worked under the supervision of Dr. Frank Grasso in the Department of Psychology at Brooklyn College.
  • Vincent Wang & Jessie Zheng won a bronze medal in Engineering for their project "Photocatalytic degradation of methylene blue using electrospun nanofibers." Jessie and Vincent worked under the supervision of Dr. Ping Lu and Ms. Simone Murray in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Long Island University.

SUNY Downstate HPREP

Posted on Sunday, May 6, 2018 by for Freshmen, Juniors, Sophomores.

Applications are now open to high school students in grades 9–11 for the Health Professions Recruitment & Exposure Program (HPREP) at SUNY Downstate Medical Center.

Who:  Motivated 9th–11th grade minority students interested in pursuing a career in medicine.
What:  Students will participate in anatomy dissections, a group research project, and a college preparatory workshop. Through involvement in group activities and discussions, participating students will further develop the academic skills that will prepare them for college and better qualify them to study health-related disciplines. Students will work in groups to research one medically related topic and give a final presentation at the end of the program.
Where:  SUNY Downstate Medical Center, 395 Lenox Rd, Brooklyn NY 11203
When:  Seven 3 hour seminars (10:00 AM–1:00 PM) on Saturdays (October 6 – November 17, 2018). Lunch will be provided.
Why:  Great exposure to medicine, college, and medical school.
Cost:  None! Students must be able to get to and from SUNY Downstate Medical Center.
How:  The application must be completed online and can found at www.downstatehprep.wordpress.com. External documentation (such as school consent forms, and transcripts) must be sent to downstatehprep@gmail.com. Please submit all application materials together. All items must be received by Monday, September 24th, 2018. Admissions will be on a rolling basis.

SUNY Downstate logo

One month to the Midwood Science Fair

Posted on Monday, April 30, 2018 by for Science Fair.

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Thursday
31

The 2018 Midwood Science Fair is only a month away. Right now as you read this the sophomore research students are diligently working on their projects, formulating hypotheses, and plotting the best way to gather and analyze data. The juniors and seniors are sharpening their metaphorical pencils as well as their literal questioning skills. The alumni judges are looking forward to seeing old friends at Midwood once again. The teachers are keeping their students focused. Everyone is coordinating their schedules to make sure they’re ready for Thursday, May 31, 2018.

It’s 1.05 time again

Posted on Monday, April 23, 2018 by for Juniors, Seniors.

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All juniors and seniors with a currently active research placement who would like to apply for a 1.05 weighted research course (Honors Science Research) for the spring semester of 2018 must fill out, print, sign, and present this form to their supervising teacher along with an up to date lab log. See your supervising teacher sometime between Monday, April 23 and Friday, April 27 (unless you were told to do something different). Renewal is not automatic. You need to apply every semester.

An "active" placement in the fall is one with 16 hours (on average) of lab log entries per month for February, March, and April. A placement is not official until your mentor has contacted me saying you have been accepted to work in their lab. It should also state the date you began working there.

Manipulating the immune system to control cancer

Posted on Wednesday, April 18, 2018 by for Juniors, Lectures, Seniors.

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Wednesday
25

Learn how the immune system can be harnessed to fight cancer. This talk is part of the quarterly Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) Student Seminar Series, created to share expertise with students, communicate the excitement of cancer research, and create a learning community at MSK. Students grade 9–12 or college are invited, and they can bring classmates. Date & Time: Wednesday, April 25, 2018, 5:00–6:30 PM. Location: Zuckerman Auditorium, 417 East 68th Street (note that this is not the usual location we go to for MSK lectures).

Portrait How the Immune System Can Be Manipulated to Control Cancer

Michael A. Postow, MD is part of the Melanoma and Immunotherapeutics Service and the The Jedd Wolchok Lab. He has an interest in developing clinical trials for patients with melanoma involving immunotherapeutic strategies. His specific areas of interest include studying the immunologic effects of radiotherapy and characterizing pharmacodynamic biomarkers associated with ipilimumab outcomes.

RockEDU Presents: Don’t Stress It with Dr. Katie Davis

Posted on Monday, April 16, 2018 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Lectures, Seniors.

Have you ever felt overwhelmed by your school work? As a practicing clinical psychiatrist, Dr. Davis will discuss best practices that can help reduce school-related anxieties. She will speak about her fMRI research on the connection between learning disorders and anxiety, and share strategies to reduce school-related anxiety to improve studying.

This event is a part of Rockefeller University’s RockEDU science outreach program. Register through Eventbrite now. Free for high school students and teachers.

DATE AND TIME
Friday, April 20, 2018
4:30 PM–6:00 PM EDT
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LOCATION
Carson Family Auditorium
The Rockefeller University
1230 York Ave
New York, NY 10065

Stressed out cat

World Science Festival needs volunteers (except on Thursday, May 31)

Posted on Tuesday, April 10, 2018 by for Extra Credit, Juniors, Seniors.

Join the World Science FestivalWSF logo for an exploration of groundbreaking discoveries, encounters with the trailblazing scientists and thinkers who are changing the world, and youth and family events that will inspire the next generation of leaders. Be a part of the largest celebration of science on the planet.

Volunteers are the heart and soul of the festival, serving as ambassadors for the World Science Festival. They are a welcoming face to visitors, chock-full of information about the Festival and its programs. Volunteers also support the many production teams that make so many compelling programs and experiences possible.

  • Be comfortable working with people of all backgrounds, ages, and levels of familiarity with science.
  • Have excellent communication skills.
  • Computer skills are a plus.
  • A background in science is an asset, but a passion for learning and sharing knowledge is key.
  • Dedication, commitment, reliability, flexibility and professionalism are essential.
  • Be at least 16 years old.

The World Science Festival takes place in all five boroughs, at more than 20 venues, over 5 days — Wednesday, May 30 through Sunday, June, 3. The World Science Festival is so important to science that people have been know to travel thousands of miles to participate. If you're reading this, you probably live within a subway's ride of every event. Click here to volunteer.

ReThink Science
World Science Festival
May 29–June 3 | New York City

Do not volunteer for anything on Thursday, May 31 since that is the day of the Midwood Science Fair. Juniors will be awarded +1 point of extra credit for each day they volunteer. Seniors will receive +5 points of regular credit.

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