Fifteen MCPS Students Named Intel Science Search Semifinalists

January 14, 2010

Fifteen Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) students are semifinalists in the 2010 Intel Science Talent Search, one of the nation’s most rigorous and prestigious science competitions for high school students.  

MCPS has 15 of Maryland’s 20 semifinalists in the competition, which is administered by the Society for Science & the Public, a nonprofit organization dedicated to public engagement in scientific research and education. MCPS is tied with the New York City Department of Education for the school district having the largest number of semifinalists in the nation.

Twelve of the semifinalists this year attend Montgomery Blair High School, making it the school with the second-highest number of semifinalists nationwide. Walt Whitman, Thomas S. Wootton, and Richard Montgomery high schools each have one semifinalist.

“We are very proud of these students who have demonstrated their talents to such a high level,” said Patricia O’Neill, president of the Montgomery County Board of Education. “Intel should also be commended for recognizing and rewarding students for their scientific accomplishments in such a high-profile way.”

The entries of MCPS’ semifinalists cover a wide range of topics, from genetics and brain function to predicting mortgage default risk.  

“The research projects of these students address important issues in a range of scientific disciplines at a level that is truly remarkable,” said Dr. Jerry D. Weast, superintendent of schools. “These students, with the support of their teachers and parents, continue a long history of exceptional performance by MCPS students in the Intel competition.”

The semifinalists nationwide were chosen from among 1,736 entrants representing high schools in 37 states and the District of Columbia.

Each of the 300 students who were named semifinalists will receive a $1,000 award for their outstanding research. Additionally, every school will receive a $1,000 award for each semifinalist named, which is to be used to further excellence in science, math, and engineering education.  

Finalists in the competition will be named Jan. 27. They will attend the Science Talent Institute in Washington, D.C., in March, where they will participate in a final judging process and compete for a top scholarship award of $100,000.


Montgomery Blair High School
Michael Benjamin Cohen
Pin-Joe Ko
Yifan Li
Haozhi Lin
Li Ma
Nils Federico Molina
Kamal Kuango Ndousse
Rohan Puttagunta
Kristen Knutsen Rosano
Benjamin Louis Shaya
Conway Xu
Xinyi Yedda Zhou

Richard Montgomery High School
Jiayi Nathaniel Yang

Walt Whitman High School
Kettner John Frederick Griswold

Thomas S. Wootton High School
Ilya Dmitrievich Papatsenko

Complete list of semifinalists.

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