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Jan. 17, 2007

Twelve seniors chosen as Intel semifinalists

by Priyanka Gokhale, Online Editor-in-Chief
As announced in an assembly today, Blair has 12 semifinalists out of a total 300 in the 66th annual Intel Science Talent Search. Out of all the schools whose students submitted projects in the competition, Blair had the second-highest number of semifinalists.

All 12 semifinalists have been presented with checks for $1,000. The Intel Science Service also gave the school $12,000 for the students' achievements.

Many magnet students choose to take the Research Project class during the second semester of their junior year and the first semester of their senior year. As a part of the class, students complete an internship in the fields of math, science or technology during the summer between their junior and senior years. This year, 38 of those students submitted the project that they worked on at their internship into the competition.

To commemorate the occasion, speakers from the Intel Science Service came to speak to students and staff members. Magnet coordinator Dennis Heidler opened the assembly, thanking students, staff members and the Intel Science Service Corporation.
Principal Phillip Gainous (center) and research teacher Glenda Torrence (right) sit with an Intel representative.

<i>Photo taken by Deepa Chellappa</i>.
Principal Phillip Gainous (center) and research teacher Glenda Torrence (right) sit with an Intel representative. Photo taken by Deepa Chellappa.


Following a brief speech by Principal Phillip Gainous, a representative from the Intel Science Service took the stage and praised all the seniors for their hard work in regards to the competition, calling them the "next generation of inventors and innovators of the country." Magnet research teacher Glenda Torrence then called up semifinalists, saying, "I feel like I'm at the Academy Awards right now."

Senior Allen Zhang, one of the 12 semifinalists, voiced optimism about Blair's prospects in the next round. "I think we have a lot of strong competitors," he said. "We have a lot of people who have already won prizes in other competitions, so I think we'll do well."

Heidler concurred, saying, "I'm very proud of the senior class's efforts. I look forward to the next round, and hopefully, we'll have some finalists."

Last year, Blair boasted 12 semifinalists. Two Blazers later advanced to Finalist status. Of the two, Blair graduate Yuan (Chelsea) Zhang placed third in the national competition.

Blair's semifinalists are:
Joseph Davis
Merlyn Deng
Andrew Durnford
Brian Lawrence
Cyril Lan
Rachel Lee
Richard McCutchen
Neil Mendhiratta
Ethan Schaler
Joshua Yanovski
Victoria Yao
Allen Zhang
Ten of the 12 Blair semifinalists in the 66th Intel competition with their checks.

<i>Photo taken by Deepa Chellappa</i>.
Ten of the 12 Blair semifinalists in the 66th Intel competition with their checks. Photo taken by Deepa Chellappa.



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  • wheee on January 17, 2007 at 3:05 PM
    u guys beat STS!!!! w00t
  • rah rah!! on January 17, 2007 at 5:45 PM
    CONGRATS to Blair for having such amazing results!! wow! 2nd highest in the COUNTRY!!
    Congrats to Allen!!
  • ^_^ on January 17, 2007 at 7:25 PM
    thanks!
  • Jordy on January 17, 2007 at 7:47 PM
    Congrats to everyone!! =)
  • curious on January 18, 2007 at 10:24 AM
    congratulations guys...who beat us this year?
  • Max 06 on January 18, 2007 at 10:40 PM
    second best in the country? how bout someone run the numbers of semifinalists per magnet student and see which program comes out ahead. Hint: It's not TJ and its not even close.
  • Ravi U on January 27, 2007 at 9:17 AM
    I agree, Max.

    Either way, congratulations to all of you guys!
  • Huh on January 27, 2007 at 12:11 PM
    Only 38 students out of a 100 took the research class and did enough to submit it?

    That's lower than I thought it used to be
  • woo on January 28, 2007 at 3:43 PM
    Thomas Jefferson high - the magnet high school beat us. but they're entirely magnet.
  • Someone you may know on February 4, 2007 at 1:48 PM
    To Huh:
    (1) Not everyone in Magnet does an SRP. An SRP isn't just something you do for fun; it's a LOT of work.
    (2) Not everyone that does an SRP submits it to Intel, even if their project is good enough.
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