2011 ISEF Newsletter #3

Saturday’s ISEF report by Shubhro Saha, CSF ISEF competitor from Choate-Rosemary Hall.

Read Shubhro’s abstract and biography and those of the other Connecticut Science Fair and Science Horizons competitors at Meet The Winners.

Summary of Saturday ISEF Team Connecticut – Shubhro Saha

The weekend begins! Saturday steadily began as the Connecticut finalists trickled into Westchester Airport. I was familiar with most of the students from the time at CT Science Fair, but a few hellos later, we were as close as peas in a pod. Also like peas in a pod, we sat in a row at the café in Westchester airport to munch on sandwiches before the flight. Right on the dot, our flight rolled off the tarmac towards Chicago’s O’Hare airport, and the conversations continued at 30,000 feet. David—ever the aviation extraordinaire—impressed us by identifying the plane in which we flew as a “DC” something-or-another. A seat away, Ryan studiously pored over his AP World History study book. Swathi and Amoolya were engaged in conversation just a row away, and I tucked my nose into David Brooks’s book The Social Animal, while occasionally helping Toni to pick up beatboxing techniques. Ryota was to join us on Sunday morning.

Of course, our chaperones were thoroughly prepared and made enjoyable company. With a swift glance at documents and a caring cheer, they helped us around the dizzying number of terminals at O’Hare before the final flight. While waiting, we marveled at Mr Wisner’s iPad and munched on snacks.

The second aircraft was much larger than the first, and as we settled into our seats, I caught out of the corner of my eye a fellow who seemed to be none other than the great Ben Stiller. Delighted, I informed the finalists of my suspicion that he too would be flying Economy class with us, and we speculated the probability. Near the end of the flight, it was clear we had changed time zones because of how some of us started to doze off. Though we didn’t follow up with Ben Stiller, we did run into Billy Bob Thornton at baggage claim. While he exited the airport, a TMZ reporter pestering Thornton with questions caught a few of us in the background of the video.

The O-Hotel is a quite comfortable place. We ate a late dinner at IHOP across the street, where I ran into a friend from STS. Most of us ordered “breakfast food”. Well-fed, exhausted, and eager to take on the week, we hit the hay early for the Sunday ahead.


ISEF coordinator Ann Frattalone and Chaperone Bob Harris awaiting arriving of students at Westchester Airport

ISEF competitors at Los Angeles Airport

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