Plainview-Old Bethpage Central School District’s John F. Kennedy (POBJFK) High School students Philip Danziger, Samantha Frucht and Grace Smith recently placed second in the national competition, after being named regional finalists at the Toshiba Exploravision competition.
The students, under the leadership of coach MaryLou O’Donnell, were the first to be named national finalists in the high school’s history. Teams from across the United States and Canada submit their ideas in the hopes of being recognized as one of the 24 regional finalists in the last round.
“We are immensely proud of our talented students who not only participated in this renowned national competition, but placed second overall,” said Superintendent Dr. Lorna Lewis. “Philip, Samantha and Grace have demonstrated commitment to achieving academic excellence beyond the classroom and we commend them for their hard work and accomplishments.”
The Toshiba Exploravision program aims to engage and inspire students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields challenging high school students from across the country to research a current technology and envision what it might look like 20 years into the future. In an 11-page essay, the students carefully detailed the device they envisioned, the design process, the medical breakthroughs that would be needed to make their vision a reality and weighed the consequences—positive and negative—of implementation. After being recognized as regional finalists the team developed a model of their idea and created a five-screen web simulation which can be found at intraneuromuscularcellularregeneration.weebly.com.
“Philip, Samantha and Grace produced an incredibly well-written paper—envisioning and describing their system for nerve repair,” said the high school’s research coordinator and coach MaryLou O’Donnell. “They worked well as a team and were always open to suggestions on ways to expand on each aspect of their technology.”
The students will be traveling to Washington D.C. in June to share their creation and to be awarded a $5,000 U.S. Series EE Savings Bonds in recognition of their efforts.