Thirteen Indian-American students, including one each from New York and New Jersey, were among 40 high school students who were declared finalists Jan. 24 in the Regeneron Science Talent Search, the oldest and most prestigious science and math competition for high school seniors in the U.S.
The Indian-American students include Archana Verma from Jericho Senior High School, Jericho, New York and Indrani Das from the Academy for Medical Science Technology, Hackensack, New Jersey.
The finalists were selected, based on the scientific rigor and world-changing potential of their research projects.
They will go to Washington, D.C. from March 9-15 to undergo a rigorous judging process to determine the top ten winners. They will also have the opportunity to meet with national leaders and share their projects with the public at the National Geographic Society.
The selected students will compete for more than $1.8 million in top awards – more than half of the Regeneron Science Talent Search total annual award distribution of $3.1 million. The top 10 awards range from $40,000 to $250,000 for the first place winner. The winners will be announced at a formal awards gala at the National Building Museum on March 14.
The finalists’ projects cover multiple disciplines of science, including behavioral and social science, biochemistry, cellular and molecular biology, chemistry, computer science, computational biology and bioinformatics, engineering, mathematics, medicine and health, physics, and space science.
“These talented young scientists are already exploring life-changing solutions for the world’s problems and are poised to lead innovation for future generations,” said George D. Yancopoulos, President and Chief Scientific Officer of Regeneron.
The Regeneron Science Talent Search, founded and produced by Society for Science and the Public, has been described as the “Super Bowl of Science.”
Maya Ajmera, president and CEO of Society for Science and the Public and publisher of Science News, said in a statement that these 40 young scientists, engineers and mathematicians are poised to be the next generation of leaders in business and academia.
“Science breeds curiosity, enabling innovators to develop solutions that will help solve our world’s most pressing challenges. We are proud to celebrate 75 years of recognizing new innovations and research demonstrating the outstanding capabilities of young minds,” Ajmera said.
The finalists are from 34 schools in 17 states. Sixty-two percent of them are male while 38 percent are female. The 40 were selected from roughly 300 scholars and more than 1,700 entrants based on the originality and creativity of their scientific research as well as their achievement and leadership both inside and outside of the classroom, according to a Regeneron press statement.