Thursday, May 28, 2015

Filipino students bring home award from the 2015 Intel International Science & Engineering Fair

The 3rd grand prize winners in the biomedical and health
sciences category: Kenneth Antonio, Thea Tinaja and Marian
Cabuntocan of Bayugan City.
The team project of three high school students from Bayugan National Comprehensive High School in Bayugan City, Agusan del Sur won a third grand award prize of US$1,000 in the biomedical and health sciences category of the Intel Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) held 11-15 May 2015 in Pittsburgh.    

The ISEF, a project of the Society for Science and the People based in Washington DC, is the premier and largest international pre-college science research competition for students in grades 9 to 12. 

The winning team of Kenneth Michael Angelo Natividad Antonio, 14, Marian Romero Cabuntocan, 16, and Thea Marie Laquinta Tinaja, 15, studied the potential of extracts from the integuments of the diamond back squid, a species that abounds in the locality, as source of neuroprotective and anti-stroke agents without causing adverse side effects on cardiac activity. They have found beneficial use for the integuments - waste products of a squid processing plant in their area.

Antonio will be in Grade 9, and Cabuntocan and Tinaja in Grade 10 this coming school year under the K-12 program. They plan to continue with their scientific investigation hoping to bring the results to the ISEF 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona..

Angelo Urag of Butuan City with his project
in material science.
Two other young Filipino scientists were with them in Pittsburgh.

Angelo Grabriel Abundo Urag, 15, incoming Grade 10 student of Father Saturnino Urios University in Butuan City, produced superhydrophic (non-wetting) copper stearate films using a one-step process.  It was his second time in the ISEF. Last year, he brought to Los Angeles his study on the superhydropic properties of the wings of local dragonflies.

Mary Carmelle Antonette Pedregosa Gindap, 16, incoming Grade 11 student of Iloilo National High School, Iloilo City, studied the antibacterial and anticoagulant properties of proteins from the skin and spine of Acanthaster planci, a marine animal species that feeds on and thereby destroys corals. She said that by gathering these sea creatures for biomedical uses, the infestation of the corals is controlled, thus protecting the reefs from degradation.

The Philippine delegates were part of around 1,700 young scientists selected from 422 affiliate fairs in more than 75 countries, regions and territories that converged in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The five Filipino delegates were the cream of regional finalists whose projects in the life and physical sciences competed at the National Science and Technology Fair (NSTF) of the Department of Education. The NSTF is the only ISEF-affiliated fair in the country.

Carmelle GIndap of Iloilo City studied the potential benefits
from the animal species that eats/threatens coral reefs.
Around 600 of the ISEF participants received awards and prizes for their innovative research, including 20 “Best of Category” winners, who each received a US$5,000 prize. Categories span the basic sciences, mathematics, engineering and specialized areas like embedded systems, computational technology and bioinformatics, and systems software.

From among these 20 “bests”,  the top prize, the Gordon E. Moore award of US$75,000 went to 17-year-old Raymond Wang of Canada for his mechanical engineering project – a new air inlet system for airplane cabins, which improves the availability of fresh air in the cabin while reducing pathogen inhalation concentrations.

Two runner-ups each received the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Awards of US$50,000 for projects in biomedical and health sciences, and environmental management. Nicole Ticea, 17, also of Canada, developed an inexpensive, disposable, easy-to-use testing device to combat the high rate of undiagnosed HIV infections in low-income communities, while Karan Jerath, 18, of Friendswood, Texas, refined and tested  a novel device that should allow an undersea oil well to rapidly and safely recover following a blowout.

The research year for ISEF 2016 has begun. High school student scientists all over the world have at most one year between January 1, 2015 and May 2016 to complete a research project that may qualify for the international competition in May next year. In the Philippines, K-9 to K-12 students will pass through three hurdles: division, regional and national fairs for that chance to go to ISEF 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona. .

Kenneth, Angelo, Carmelle, Marian and Thea with their Shout-Out poster.

Credits: Photos from ISEF Team Philippines 2015.

No comments:

Post a Comment