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January 11, 2000
Indians Score On Intel Talent Search
J M Shenoy
Indian American students grabbed six of the eight finalist positions in Texas in the Intel Science Talent Search (Intel STS). The students are: Priyanka Agarwal, Manoj Palissery Unni, Tanay Jagdish Amin, Puja Maewal, Deipanjan Nandi and Mitali Banerjee.
In Virginia, six of the 15 semi-finalists were Indian Americans: Anita Bakshi, Giridhar Prakash Nandipati, Ajita Shukla, Vijay Shankar Tripathi, Nisha Nagarkatti and Abhishek Gupta.
The Intel Corporation and Science Service on January 10 awarded $ 600,000 to 300 students from across the country, as well as to the schools they attend.
Intel, the world's largest chipmaker, is also a leading manufacturer of computer, networking and communications products.
From the 300 semifinalists, 40 finalists will be announced on January 24.
The semifinalists, high school seniors ranging in age from 15 to 19, were selected from 1,517 applications submitted from 530 high schools in 48 states, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. New York fielded the most semifinalists with 154 (51 per cent), followed by Maryland with 19 (six per cent) and Virginia with 15 (five per cent). Of the semifinalists, 149 were female, 151 were males.
For the first time in the 59-year history of the competition, each of the 300 semifinalists will receive $ 1,000 in recognition of their achievements in science. In addition, each of the 178 schools that placed a semifinalist in the competition will receive $ 1,000 per semifinalist to be used in support of the school's science and math education programs.
"By recognizing and rewarding both the students and their schools for their scientific achievements, we hope to encourage more young people and teachers to embrace inquiry-based learning," said Carlene Ellis, vice president and director, education, at Intel.
"These methods are designed to nurture critical reasoning skills and to demonstrate how math and science skills are crucial to making sense of today's technological world and making the best decisions for tomorrow," she said.
Alumni of the STS, often considered the "Junior Nobel Prize," hold more than 100 of the world's most coveted science and math honors, including three National Medal of Science winners, nine MacArthur Foundation Fellows, two Fields Medallists and five Nobel Laureates.
Students' individual research reports are judged for their research ability, scientific originality and creative thinking. The research projects cover all disciplines of science, including chemistry, physics, mathematics, engineering, and the social and biological sciences.
In addition to the scholarship award, all semifinalists and their teachers are honored with certificates of merit. Science Service recommends these students to select colleges and universities for admission and financial assistance.
The final 40 will make an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, DC to the Science Talent Institute, where the final judging will be done. On the basis of a rigorous round of interviews, 10 top scholarship winners will be selected.
This year the top prize will be increased from a $ 50,000 scholarship to a $ 100,000 four-year scholarship. The second place finalist will receive a $ 75,000 scholarship and the third place finalist will receive a $ 50,000 scholarship. Fourth through sixth place finalists each receive $ 25,000 scholarships; seventh through tenth prize winners each receive $ 20,000 scholarships. The remaining 30 finalists will each receive a $ 5,000 scholarship award.
In addition to the scholarship awards, each of the finalists participating in the STI will receive an Intel Pentium III processor-based mobile computer.
The program has been co-ordinated since its inception by Science Service, one of the most respected non-profit organizations advancing the cause of science. Over the past 59 years, the Science Talent Search has recognized over 2,000 finalists with more than $ 5 million in scholarships.
In two years, Intel has increased awards and scholarships from $ 207,000 to $ 1,250,000.
Indian American semi-finalists in other states are:
Sebastian Pullakad Mathews
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