Two Fair Students Selected as Finalists at Broadcom MASTERS Competition

Posted: 4 September 2012

Filed Under: Broadcom MASTERS, In The News, Media Releases, Our Fair


Bob Wisner, Fair Director
860.395.8825 (cell)
[email protected]
Karen Cohen, Media
860.368.9257 (cell)
[email protected]

Download Press Release (pdf)

September 2, 2012 – Two Connecticut Science & Engineering Fair students are among the 30 national finalists of the 2012 Broadcom MASTERS (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) Competition.  Katherine Fennell and Maura Oei, who were selected from thousands of entrants, will attend the competition Sept. 28 to Oct. 3 in Washington, D.C.  They will showcase their projects and compete as teams in STEM activities.   The top prize is the $25,000 Samueli Foundation Award, a gift of Susan and Henry Samueli, co-founder of Broadcom Corp.

During the 2011-12 school year, Katherine Fennell prepared a project called Could a Small Aquatic Plant Have Reversed Global Warming 49 Million Years Ago?  A Wilton resident and seventh-grade student at The Montessori Middle School in Norwalk at the time, she found it plausible that Azolla, a small fresh water fern, caused a significant decline in carbon dioxide 55 million years ago.  She moved to New York this summer and now attends the New York City Lab Middle School for Collaborative Studies in Manhattan. See Katherine’s project abstract.

In her project, Development of a Prototype Pendulum Wave Energy Conversion Device, Maura Oei, an eighth grader at the Oei Home School in Hebron, developed and tested a prototype Pendulum Wave Energy Conversion Device that produced clean, reliable, scalable, low-cost renewable energy. See Maura’s project abstract.

Five Fair students were among the 300 Broadcom MASTERS semifinalists:

Thurgood Marshall Middle School
Jonathan Paul Siveyer (Grade 7)
Peel Power: Using Banana Peels to Reduce Metal Contamination of Water

St. Joseph School
Martha Haddad (Grade 7)
Designing an Effective Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell

Saint Paul School
Elizabeth Patricia Lopreiato (Grade 7)
The Eco-Friendly Diaper, Landfill Design: The Type of Cloth versus the Rate of Decomposition

Eastern Middle School
Paul James Hansel (Grade 8)
An Investigation Into Hydrogen-Producing Green Algae

Middlebrook School
Kevin Joseph Moya (Grade 7)
Improving Efficiency of Solar Energy: The Effect of Magnification, Tilt-Angle, and Temperature on the Power Output of a Silicon Solar Cell

Middle school students are nominated to compete in the Broadcom MASTERS Competition by Society for Science & the Public (SSP)-affiliated science fairs held during the school year.  Nominees enter the competition by completing an application explaining their science project and demonstrating their use of STEM principles – science, technology, engineering and math – in the development and presentation of their project.  From entrants nationwide, 300 semifinalists are selected, including 30 finalists.

All of the Connecticut students were nominated for the Broadcom MASTERS Competition as a result of their strong finish at the Connecticut Science Fair held in March at Quinnipiac University.  Oei placed second in the Dominion Millstone Power Station Physical Sciences 8th grade category.  Fennell placed first in the 7th grade Pfizer Life Sciences category.

The Connecticut Science Fair is made possible by a grant and volunteer support from its presenting sponsor United Technologies Corporation and by contributions from industrial and individual supporters.  The 65th annual fair will be held March 12-16, 2013, at Quinnipiac University in Hamden.

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