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22 LI students advance to Intel international science fair

Smithtown High School East junior Matthew Mullahy, center,

Smithtown High School East junior Matthew Mullahy, center, and senior Sydney Bracht, right, are advancing to the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. They are with Maria Zeitlin, their school's research coordinator. Credit: Smithtown Central School District

Twenty-two students are advancing to the international level after having top projects this spring at the Long Island Science & Engineering Fair.

This year’s fair consisted of more than 400 individual and team projects during the first round in February, with at least 25 percent of projects in each category selected for the second round in March. Both rounds were held at the Crest Hollow Country Club in Woodbury.

First-place finalists in various categories qualify for the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, which will be held in Pittsburgh May 13-18. That competition, which is administered by the Society for Science & the Public in Washington, D.C., brings together approximately 1,800 students from more than 75 countries to vie for about $4 million in prizes.

Those selected to advance and their high schools are: Smiti Shah, Bethpage; Natasha Aviva Dilamani and Amy Shteyman, Great Neck North; Rinni Bhansali and Tong Ye, Half Hollow Hills East; Irene Antony, Half Hollow Hills West; Eish Maheshwari, Herricks; Chiu Fan Bowen, Shruthi Shekar and Kendra Zhang, Jericho; Merrick Cai, Kings Park; Fred Chu, Emily Cruz, Susan Xiaoshu Wu and Vanessa Zhang, Manhasset; Dylan Makani, North Shore Hebrew Academy; Julia Park, Plainview-Old Bethpage JFK; Sydney Bracht and Matthew Mullahy, Smithtown East; Jacqueline Balestrieri, St. Anthony’s; Radhika Patel, Syosset; and Luke Harris, West Islip.


Etiquette Club

Nathaniel Woodhull Elementary School’s male students in grades 3-5 are learning about the importance of polite behavior in professional settings through a new Etiquette Club.

The club’s first four sessions included topics such as conversational norms, thank-you notes and signing names in cursive — with members wearing collared shirts and ties to school each Tuesday. The club launched as an after-school program with plans to expand the curriculum and enrollment in the future.

“It is great seeing the boys using their new skills each day in the hallways and classrooms,” said club adviser Jonathan Germer.


Best music communities

Twenty-four Suffolk County school districts are among 583 nationwide named 2018 Best Communities for Music Education by the NAMM Foundation. Designations are made to districts that demonstrate an “exceptionally high commitment and access to music education,” the foundation said.

Selected districts were Amityville, Bay Shore, Bayport-Blue Point, Brentwood, Center Moriches, Commack, Comsewogue, Connetquot, Deer Park, East Hampton, Half Hollow Hills, Huntington, Islip, Longwood, Miller Place, North Babylon, Patchogue-Medford, Port Jefferson, Sayville, South Country, South Huntington, Southampton, West Islip and William Floyd.

In addition, Bishop McGann-Mercy Diocesan High School in Riverhead, Sayville High School and Woodhull School in Ocean Beach were recipients of the SupportMusic Merit Award.


Medical Marvels

A Jericho High School team was the winner of the sixth annual Medical Marvels Competition coordinated by the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research and Northwell Health’s Center for Workforce Readiness. Second- and third-place teams came from Elwood-John H. Glenn High School and North Shore High School in Glen Head, respectively.

This year’s competition asked participants to hypothesize approaches to end the opioid crisis. Jericho’s approach suggested using digital tools — such as facial recognition, opioid patches, and an app with live chat — to assist with early detection and treatment.

“We must encourage and support the next generation of scientists so that we continue to produce knowledge that cures diseases,” said the institute’s president and CEO Kevin Tracey.

— Michael R. Ebert

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