CSEF Student Chosen as 2013 Broadcom MASTERS Finalist

Posted: 2 September 2013
Fair Year:

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


Bob Wisner, Fair Director
860.395.8825 (cell) [email protected]

September 2, 2013 – A Connecticut Science & Engineering Fair middle school finalist is among the 30 national finalists of the 2013 Broadcom MASTERS (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) Competition.  Aakshi Agarwal from Hamden Connecticut was selected from thousands of entrants to compete Sept. 27 to Oct. 2 in Washington, D.C.  There, she will showcase her project and compete in team STEM activities. The top prize is the $25,000 Samueli Foundation Award, a gift of Susan and Henry Samueli, co-founder of Broadcom Corp. Broadcom Foundation will also give each finalist’s school $1,000 and Elmer’s® Products will award each finalist’s classroom with merchandise, rewards and a $125 Walmart gift card.

Aakshi Agarwal (Grade 8), Hamden Middle School

TACE Inhibitors as Non-Biological Drugs for Treating Rheumatoid Arthritis

During her 2012-13 school year as an eighth grader at Hamden Middle School, Aakshi Agarwal conducted research on TACE Inhibitors As Non-Biological Drugs For Treating Rheumatoid Arthritis. Agarwal used computer modeling software to identify inhibitors TNF-α (Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha) in the joints of people suffering from Rheumatoid Arthritis. TACE is the convertor of the preactive cursor of TNF-α to its active state.

CSEF Broadcom MASTERS Semifinalists

Three of our Fair finalists were among the 300 Broadcom MASTERS semifinalists:

Margaret Anne Cirino (Grade 8)

Central Middle School, Greenwich
Correlation of Birdsong Variation with Geographic Location and Subspecies Diversity

Martha Haddad (Grade 8), Saint Joseph School, Danbury
Converting Waste into Electricity Using Efficient Microbial Fuel Cells

Grace Anne Herrick (Grade 8), Saint Rose of Lima, Sandy Hook
Evaluating the Performance of a Model Solar Updraft Tower Power Plant 

To view the abstracts and awards that these students received at CSEF, click BroadcomSemiFin13


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.

The CSEF students were nominated for the Broadcom MASTERS Competition as a result of their strong finish in our 2013 state wide state fair.

Each year CSEF presents 32 invitations to top middle school finalists in all the fair’s categories. This year 19 submitted applications to the competition. It is an arduous task akin to a college application so “hats off” to our students for stepping up to the work.

The Connecticut Science & Engineering Fair is made possible by a grant and volunteer support from its presenting sponsor United Technologies Corporation and from industrial and individual supporters.  The 66th annual fair will be held March 11-15, 2014, at Quinnipiac University in Hamden.


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