May 4, 2012

The Junior Science and Humanities Symposium celebrates Fifty Years

Baldwin-Wallace Lab Coats
It’s no secret that colleges and universities are intensifying efforts to recruit strong STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) students to fill departments hungry for undergrads with research or other lab experience.

And so, college-bound high school students would be wise to take the hint and focus on exploring this great route to college (and significant scholarship money) by investigating opportunities to showcase skills in these areas.

So how should you get started? One way is to see what other students across the country are doing in the way of scientific research.

This year, the 50th National Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS) is taking place in Bethesda, Maryland.  Between May 2 and 6, 96 high school students are presenting their research to panels of expert judges in a competition that could net them as much as $12,000 and an all-expense paid trip to London.   

And for the first time, you can view a live video webcast of the JSHS awards banquet, on Saturday, May 5th at 7 p.m.  The banquet will feature speakers from the Army, Navy, and Air Force.  But most importantly, you will see the presentation of awards for both poster and paper presenters.

The JSHS program promotes original research and experimentation in the sciences, engineering and mathematics at the high school level by organizing a series of regional and national symposiums during the academic year at 48 universities located throughout the country and abroad. Literally thousands of students compete in categories including environmental science, life sciences, medicine & health/behavioral sciences, engineering, mathematics & computer sciences, and theoretical physics.

DC area students competing in the national JSHS event are representing Montgomery Blair High School (Rockville, MD), Poolesville High School (MD), River Hill High School (Clarksville, MD), Mathematics and Science High School (Midlothian, VA), and the Academy of Science (Leesburg, VA). They’ve worked with mentors from Johns Hopkins, NIH, James Madison University, the National Cancer Institute, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

By the way, teachers can get in on the prizes as well. A $500 award goes each year to one teacher from each of the 48 regions, honoring his or her contributions to advancing student participation in research.

Learn more about how high school students can get involved in local Junior Science and Humanities Symposia by visiting the JSHS website. A complete roster of students participating in Bethesda and a list of paper titles are also available on the site.

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