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Students Mentored at SB Place at Siemens Competition

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Nikhil Mehandru (center) and Sonya Prasad (right) with Santhosh Narayan (left); not pictured, Nevin Daniel

Four high school students who were mentored at Stony Brook won a combined total of $80,000 on December 6 at the 12th annual national finals of the Siemens Competition in Math, Science, and Technology, America’s premier science research competition for high school students.

Nevin Daniel, a senior at Ward Melville High School in East Setauket won a second-place $50,000 scholarship in the individual category for his work on developing a faster cancer drug delivery system. Daniel was mentored by Distinguished Professor of Chemistry Iwao Ojima, who is also Director of Stony Brook’s Institute of Chemical Biology and Drug Discovery.

Long Island seniors Sonya Prasad (The Wheatley School, Old Westbury) and Nikhil Mehandru (Roslyn High School) shared the fourth-place team prize of $30,000 with Santhosh Narayan (Munster High School, Indiana) for their work on a cancer-detecting and drug-delivery system. The team was mentored by Distinguished Professor of Materials Science and Engineering Miriam Rafailovich.

“These students inspire us all with their passion and commitment to serious scientific research,” said Siemens Foundation Chair Thomas McCausland. “As America focuses on reinvigorating math and science education, they remind us of what is possible when young people are challenged to do science at the highest level.”

Six individuals and six teams competed at the national finals held at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., after winning one of six regional competitions in November. They presented their research to a panel of judges comprised of nationally renowned scientists and mathematicians headed by lead judge Thomas D. Jones, a scientist, author, pilot, and former NASA astronaut.

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