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Congratulations to our 2016 ISEC Winners!

Brandon Wong, of Bergen County Academies in NJ, was awarded first place for his essay entitled “Bioluminescence: Natural Living Nightlights.” Anthony Zhou, of Mission San Jose High School in CA, received second place for his essay entitled “Avian Navigation: A Marriage of Quantum Mechanics and Biology.” In addition, Emi Royama, also from Bergen County Academies, won third place for her submission “Animal Coloration: The Limitless Hues of the Natural World.”

The DUJS Editorial Board would like to thank all who participated in ISEC 2016. This year we received over 230 submissions from all over the globe, making our selection process extremely difficult. To all of our contestants, we wish you all the best as you continue your studies in science. We would also like to thank the Dartmouth College Office of Undergraduate Admissions for supporting ISEC 2016.

Brandon Wong ISECFirst Place Winner: Brandon Wong
Grade: 11
Topic: Bioluminescence: Natural Living Nightlights
Bergen County Academies, Hackensack, NJ, USA
What are your thoughts about winning ISEC 2016?

It is such an honor to win first place in ISEC 2016! I am overwhelmed by this pleasant surprise and I am truly grateful for the all the guidance, advice, and support from my advisor, teachers, and peers throughout the process. I would also like to extend my gratitude to DUJS for giving me the opportunity to combine my passion for science with the art of writing and for allowing me to share with the scientific community.

What did you learn while writing your essay?

Prior to writing this essay, my knowledge of bioluminescence was limited to its occurrence as a simple natural phenomenon. During my research, I discovered its ubiquity, with its applications spanning across the vast scientific realm. The research and writing process not only furthered my interest in the interdisciplinary applications of scientific studies but also challenged me to develop my skills in creative scientific writing.
What do you hope to study in college? 

While I have not narrowed down my choices, I intend to major in a STEM subject such as chemistry/chemical engineering, mathematics, physics, or computer science. Meanwhile, I also hope to minor in a liberal art area such as Latin, French, or linguistics.

 

PictureSecond Place Winner: Anthony Zhou
Grade: 10
Topic: Avian Navigation: A Marriage of Quantum Mechanics and Biology
Mission San Jose High School, Fremont, CA, USA

What are your thoughts about winning Second Place in ISEC 2016?

I am sincerely honored and thankful to DUJS for being awarded second place at ISEC 2016. This essay has allowed me to develop and express my skills in research and writing while developing an interest in quantum biology. I am truly grateful for this opportunity to have my article published in a scientific journal. Finally, I would like to thank my family and teachers for their invaluable support.

What did you learn while writing your essay? 

This essay has allowed me to see that different fields of science, even as far apart as biology and quantum mechanics, are all interconnected. Furthermore, the union of different disciples can result in amazing discoveries that further the progress of science. I also learned about various quantum phenomena and its applications in biological systems. It was fascinating to learn about the eccentricity of the quantum world. Additionally, I learned that eloquent writing is truly important in the scientific world, as it serves as the basis for conveying ideas and research.

What do you hope to study in college? 

Although I am undecided on what specific major I would like to study, I would like to pursue biology, biochemistry, and quantum physics.

 

image1Third Place: Emi Royama
Grade: 11
Topic: Animal Coloration: The Limitless Hues of the Natural World
Bergen County Academies, Hackensack, NJ, USA

What are your thoughts about winning Third Place in ISEC 2016?

I am honored to get third place in the ISEC. I was not only able to learn new things myself, but I am ecstatic to be able to share information with other people. I am thankful to everyone who has given me advice and support.

What did you learn while writing your essay? 

While writing my essay, I learned about the building blocks of the physical color that is visible on animals. I also learned about why certain animals are colored, patterned, and structured in the ways that they are. Before writing this essay, I had never thought much about the coloration in animals, but after researching, I learned that there is a reason behind everything in nature.

What do you hope to study in college? 

At the moment, I am undecided in what I want to study in college.