WESEF 2024

Exciting Science Research news!

Eight John Jay Science Research students won ten awards at the Westchester Science and Engineering Fair (WESEF) on Saturday, March 16—in areas ranging from environmental science and social science to neuroscience—making the fair an exciting capstone to an outstanding season.

“Eleven of our Science Research students participated, which in itself is winning in my book!” said Dr. Lisa Papernik, of John Jay’s Science Research program. “It’s such a joy watching our students become experts at communicating their research. Completing a research project at this level and sharing it at a symposium is an incredible accomplishment. Winning an award on top of that is icing on the cake!”

Double winners … and winners of other competitions

Three of the WESEF winners—seniors Chloe Jaffe, Shayna Kar and Ciara McGroary—had won awards at the Westchester Rockland Junior Science and Humanities Symposium earlier this year, led by Shayna Kar’s first place award that took her to the Upstate Junior Science and Humanities Symposium.  

Seniors Chloe Jaffe and Julia Oliver each took home two awards at WESEF. In addition to placing in their research category, Chloe won the Ricoh Sustainable Development Award and Julia, the Creative Approach to Research Award.

John Jay seniors Jocelyn Blachar and Alice Cai and juniors Dakota Cameron and Nina Vigil also won awards at WESEF.

WESEF Awards Ceremony

Well done!

Phenomenal work

“I am very proud of our SciRe students and the phenomenal work they and their mentors do,” said Dr. Samir Biswas, assistant principal of John Jay High School, who attended the WESEF awards ceremony. “I’m constantly amazed by the level of sophisticated work they manage while balancing the demands of being a high school student.”

“All of our students in the program can feel proud of their hard work and accomplishments in research,” said Science Research teacher Krista Munger. “It is wonderful to see these presenters rewarded for their efforts.”

congrats to:

Jocelyn Blachar: Honorable Mention Award in Behavioral and Social Sciences for “Food behavior in food allergic teens.”

Alice Cai: 3nd place in Medicine and Health Sciences for “Effects of senolytic agents on endometrial stromal cell decidualization.”

Dakota Cameron: Visionary Engineering Award for “Utilization of plastic fiber wastes from the fast fashion industry in concrete to mitigate environmental impacts of plastic and enhance concrete strength.”

Chloe Jaffe: the Ricoh Sustainable Development Award & 3rd place in Environmental Sciences for “Extracting enriched cellulose nano/microfibrils from pelleted municipal solid waste for the synthesis of a novel paper prototype.”

Shayna Kar: 3rd place in Neuroscience for “The use of natural language processing in the detection of mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease.”

Julia Oliver: Creative Approach to Research Award & 2nd Place in Medicine and Health Sciences for “How bleeding, placental type, and specific abnormalities affect patients undergoing fetoscopic laser surgery for twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome.”

Ciara McGroary: Innovations in Biological Sciences Research Award for “The role of status epilepticus seizures in sudden and unexpected death in epilepsy.”

Nina Vigil: the Teatown Young Environmentalist Award for “Examining the benefits of fruit-bearing plants for bird populations in residential areas.”