For Immediate Release — March 24, 2010 | Pacific
Charles Hoff: DoDDS Pacific, Public Affairs Officer | 080-2703-0632
TSUKUBA CITY, JAPAN — March 24, 2010 — Freshman Nicole Perry of M.C. Perry High School in Iwakuni, Japan earned top honors at an awards ceremony held March 18 for finalists in the 30th Annual DoDEA Pacific Junior Science and Humanities Symposium.
TSUKUBA CITY, Japan (March 18, 2010) 2010 DoDEA Pacific Junior Science and Humanities Symposium Champion Nicole Perry of M.C. Perry High School in Iwakuni, Japan with DoDEA Pacific Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment Dr. Joyce Lutrey, U.S. Coast Guard ENS Jessica Navarro, and DoDEA Japan District Superintendent Clayton Fujie (Photo by Charly Hoff, DoDEA Pacific Public Affairs/Released)
Perry made her formal oral presentation titled “Environmental Products: Green or Mean” before nearly 100 of her peers and a panel of four judges including National Science foundation Tokyo Regional Office Director Dr. Machi Dilworth; NASA Attache with the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo Justin Tilman; U.S. Coast Guard ENS Jessica Navarro; and 1983 DoDDS Pacific JSHS Champion Chris Zeitvogel.
Perry bested 22 presentations delivered by fellow DoDEA Pacific high school students from Guam, Japan, South Korea and Okinawa to claim first place. The announcement was a pleasant surprise to Perry, “There were some great presentations given during JSHS, and I feel very honored that they thought my research was so good!”
Her victory comes with a $2000 undergraduate tuition scholarship and a free trip to Bethesda, Md. at the end of April to compete on a national stage with 240 regional JSHS winners from all across the U.S.
Perry will be joined at the JSHS National Symposium by DoDEA Pacific second-place finisher Alexis Mills from Guam High School and third-place finisher Elizabeth Riehle of Seoul American High School. Mills and Riehle also earned undergraduate scholarships of $1500 and $1000 respectively.
The Junior Science and Humanities Symposium is a nationwide program supported by the Department of Defense and colleges and universities to encourage high school students with aspirations in science, technology, engineering and mathematics to conduct rigorous, independent research projects.
Students are guided by mentors—often working professionals in scientific fields—over the course of many months to develop a hypothesis, conduct formal research, analyze their results, and present and defend their findings before peers and judges at a regional competition.
“We are very proud of all the hard work that Nicole put into her project and also the hard work and energy put in by all of her teachers and parents over the years,” said M.C. Perry High School Principal Morgan Nugent.
In addition to formal oral presentations and poster sessions, students attending the DoDEA Pacific JSHS made study trips to leading scientific research agencies located in Tsukuba City—one of only two planned science cities in the world. The study trips included hands-on tours and demonstrations by leading researchers from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), National Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention (NIED), High Energy Accelerator Research Organization (KEK), among others.
To qualify for the regional competitions, students submit research papers and must be selected to formally present by a committee of trained science professionals. Those students that are not selected for formal oral presentations participate in less formal poster sessions. The poster sessions are also judged and offer students direct, constructive feedback so they can polish their research methods and presentation skills for future competitions.
Only finalists in the formal oral presentation category at the regional symposia are eligible to advance to the national level. The JSHS Nationals are sponsored by the U.S. Army, Navy and Air Force and hosted by the U.S. Army Research Laboratory. The competition takes place April 28 to May 2 and student presentations will be webcast live from the JSHS web site.
The top 18 presenters from JSHS Nationals will win additional undergraduate scholarships and advance to the final competition at the London International Youth Science Forum, July 29 – Aug. 12, hosted by London University.
No matter what happens at Nationals, Perry said she is determined to study biology or medicine in college and an advanced degree, “Hopefully, I will also be able to go to graduate school and earn a PhD. After graduate work, I would like to pursue a career in Medicine, specifically in researching diseases.”
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