The Chosen: A New Crop of Scientific Minds; Student science competition announces finalists

High school students from 14 states and the District of Columbia have qualified to compete for the top prizes in the 2004 Intel Science Talent Search. The 40 finalists, announced on Jan. 28, conducted original research in behavioral sciences, biochemistry, planetary sciences, mathematics, medicine, and other fields.

Intel Corp. of Santa Clara, Calif., has sponsored the annual event since 1998, and Science Service, the publisher of Science News, has administered the competition since 1942, when it began as the Westinghouse Science Talent Search. Five past winners have gone on to capture Nobel prizes.

Apart from their scientific prowess, this year’s finalists have diverse talents in athletics, arts, and letters. One is an acclaimed classical Indian dancer, another is a competitive rock climber, and others have published poetry and won awards for storytelling. More than two-thirds of the finalists are fluent in a second language, and four-fifths play a musical instrument. The finalists are 16 to 18 years old, and 45 percent are female.

Schools in New York State produced 18 of the finalists, and each of three schools in that state and one school in Maryland boast pairs of finalists.

The competition had 1,652 entrants in all, and the finalists were among the 300 competitors who were named semifinalists on Jan. 14. Intel will award $1,000 to each of the semifinalists and to each of their schools.

The 40 finalists will travel to Washington, D.C., in March to compete for a total of $530,000 in college scholarships. Each finalist will also receive a notebook computer from Intel.

The 2004 finalists are:

California: Arjun Anand Suri, Clovis West H.S., Fresno; Moriah Katherine Nachbaur, Crystal Springs Uplands School, Hillsborough; Phillip Thomas Deutsch, La Canada H.S., La Canada.

Connecticut: Lisa Doreen Glukhovsky, New Milford H.S., New Milford.

District of Columbia: Andrei Munteanu, Benjamin Banneker H.S., Washington.

Georgia: Boris Alexeev, Cedar Shoals H.S., Athens.

Indiana: Ann Chi, Terre Haute South Vigo H.S., Terre Haute.

Iowa: Rachael Theresa Collier, Mediapolis H.S., Mediapolis.

Maryland: Gaurav Subhash Thakur, The Learning Community International, Columbia; Qilei Hang, Allegany H.S., Cumberland; Melis Nuray Anahtar and Gordon L. Su, both of Montgomery Blair H.S., Silver Spring.

Massachusetts: Andrei Joseph Levin, Maimonides School, Brookline; Herbert Mason Hedberg, North Attleboro H.S., North Attleboro.

Michigan: Yuyin Chen, Cranbrook Kingswood School, Bloomfield Hills.

Minnesota: Ning Zhou, Wayzata H.S., Plymouth.

New Hampshire: Amos Benjamin Lubin, Hanover H.S., Hanover.

New York: Jennifer Anne D’Ascoli, Academy of the Holy Names, Albany; Silas Isaac Richelson and Jayne Frances Wolfson, both of Byram Hills H.S., Armonk; Craig Louis Auster, Carmel H.S., Carmel; Allyson Molly Goldberg, Croton-Harmon H.S., Croton-on-Hudson; Bruce David Halperin and Felicia Yuen-Lee Yen, both of Half Hollow Hills H.S. East, Dix Hills; Eduard Reznik and Kevin Yibo Wang, both of Ward Melville H.S., East Setauket; Katherine Hartman, Guilderland Central H.S., Guilderland Center; Maria Lynn Michta, Sachem North H.S., Lake Ronkonkoma; Elizabeth Rose Heller, Nanuet H.S., Nanuet; Shaye Perry Storm, Midwood H.S., New York City; Matan Harel, Stuyvesant H.S., New York City; Neha Chauhan, Susan E. Wagner H.S., New York City; Daniel Chimin Choi, Syosset H.S., Syosset; Simeon Charles McMillan, Uniondale H.S., Uniondale; Rohini Subhadra Rau-Murthy, Yorktown H.S., Yorktown Heights.

Oregon: Ryna Karnik, Oregon Episcopal School, Portland; Duy Minh Ha, Ulysses S. Grant H.S., Portland.

Texas: Sean Dilip Raj, Hightower H.S., Missouri City.

Virginia: Divya Nettimi, Thomas Jefferson H.S. for Science and Technology, Alexandria; Linda Brown Westrick, Maggie L. Walker Governor’s School, Richmond.

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