Science Research Students Excel

Science Research Students Excel
Posted on 05/14/2020
science research students excel

The Rondout Valley Science Research program had another extraordinary year despite the difficult situation that developed this spring. The program continued to offer our students unparalleled opportunities to develop knowledge and master skills at levels far beyond their years which will undoubtedly pave the way for success and prepare them to take the lead in solving the complex issues facing our planet and society.


Our success began this year when Anni Berlin, a senior in the Rondout Valley High School Science Research program, was invited to present the findings of her work examining the role of Val/Met brain derived neurotrophic factor single nucleotide polymorphism in Alzheimer’s disease at the 2019 Society for Neuroscience conference in Chicago. This annual event is the premier venue for neuroscientists to present emerging science, learn from experts, forge collaborations with peers, explore new tools and technologies, and advance careers. Anni was the only high school student to receive an invitation to this world renowned scientific symposium, and the research professionals to whom she presented her work were truly astonished when they discovered that she was a high school student and not a graduate student working on her Ph.D.. 


Then, just prior to the onset of the pandemic, our seniors competed against the top science students from across the northeast at the Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS) sub-regionals in Saratoga. They presented their PowerPoint talks, collected more awards than all but one other school district, and Grace Barnum went on to present her winning talk at the JSHS regional semi finals where she earned recognition for her work. 


Junior Science and Humanities Symposium Sub-regional

Grace Barnum - First Place in General Biology 

Anni Berlin - Third Place in Biomedical Sciences

Jen Callan - Third Place in Biochemistry 

Katie Hardy - Third Place in Environmental Science 


Finally, our seniors demonstrated their collective uncompromising drive to succeed as they competed in the Greater Capital Region Science and Engineering Fair (GCRSEF) in the midst of the pandemic. Several weeks before the competition after schools had been closed, they each rose to the challenge of competing in a virtual format, worked tirelessly in isolation to adapt their presentations, and won three prestigious awards. 


Greater Capital Region Science and Engineering Fair 

Annika Berlin - National Association of Biology Teachers (NABT) Science Research Award 

Jennifer Callan - Stockholm Junior Water Prize 

Katherine Hardy - Stockholm Junior Water Prize


Congratulations to these students who have achieved great success in this program, despite recent difficult circumstances.