Intel STSThe 40 students named yesterday as national finalists in the 2016 Intel Science Talent Search (STS), the oldest and one of the most prestigious pre-college math and science competitions in the United States, came from 18 states and 38 high schools.

They also came from CTY.

Eleven of the 40 high school seniors, whose projects aimed to answer tough scientific questions and create technologies to improve people’s lives, were CTY students.

Miland Jagota, a CTYer and finalist from Bethlehem, Penn., was named a finalist for his work replacing an expensive material used in touch screens with a cheaper material that could lower the cost of iPads and other electronic devices. California CTY student Maya Varma, who engineered an inexpensive, portable spirometer that people can use in their homes to monitor respiratory conditions such as COPD, began her project with a CTY Cogito Research Award in 2014.  

The finalists were selected from 1,750 entrants on the basis of the originality and creativity of their scientific research, as well as their achievement and leadership both inside and outside the classroom.

Next month, the finalists will travel to Washington, D.C. to compete in the final round of the competition. The top three students will receive Medal of Distinction awards of $150,000 each. Three second-place winners will receive awards of $75,000 and three third-place awardees will receive $35,000 each.

— Kristi Birch