AMSR News

What We're Doing: Becoming Intel Semi-Finalists!
Posted 01/19/2014 11:00AM


Click on the above image for a larger version.

On November 13th, 2013, four seniors from Berkshire's Advanced Math/Science Research (AMSR) program submitted applications to the INTEL Science Talent Search (STS).  INTEL STS, formerly known as the Westinghouse Science Talent Search, is the Nation’s most distinguished and competitive science competition for high school seniors. Each November, students from all over the US submit applications that include a 20 page journal-format research paper on their long-term research project, several short answer essays on topics such as “What do you think the next big discovery in science will be,” and a statement of the attributes that make them a good scientist or engineer. 

Other metrics:
  1. Semifinalists of the Intel Science Talent Search (lntel STS) 2014 were selected from among 1,794 entrants representing 489 high schools in 45 states, the District of Columbia, and seven overseas schools.
  2. Other independent schools in New England with INTEL semi-finalists include: Choate, Phillips Academy, Belmont Hill, Phillips Exeter Academy, and The Loomis-Chaffee School. 
  3. Students from Massachusetts: 12

Today, Hyun Suk (Jimmy) Chung was named as one of 300 Semi-Finalists for his work with the CryoEM structure of MacK, a novel Mycophage isolated here at Berkshire School. Dr. Burch described him and his project this way: 

A  leader in the Advanced Math/Science Research (AMSR) program at Berkshire, Hyun Suk (Jimmy) Chung has curiosity and tenacity that are impressive and it is no surprise that he has been able to create a research portfolio that is competitive at the national level.  Eager to learn and highly-adaptable, this charismatic and outgoing young man is a genuine pleasure to work with.  Jimmy entered the AMSR program in 2012 with an interest in computer science and a strong foundation in chemistry and physics.  With the remote guidance of Dr. Susan Hafenstein from Penn State College of Medicine, he was able to apply these skills to learn Cryo-EM 3D reconstruction, a method used to determine the structure of a macromolecule.  Using this technique, Jimmy solved the structure of MacK, a virus isolated by a student in our Phage Hungers program.  It was a great idea, and his project embodies how science works: it is interdisciplinary and it is collaborative.

With five Semi-Finalists in the past five years, Berkshire is thrilled to congratulate Jimmy for this fine achievement!

Watch a video of this year's four entrants here:


See the list of Semi-Finalists here

The list of 40 Finalists will be announced on January 22nd - good luck, Jimmy!

Post-script from Dr. April Burch:

While Jimmy wasn't selected as a finalist, his accomplishment is nonetheless impressive and important to Berkshire.   Jimmy and Berkshire School's Advanced Math/Science Research Program receive a $1000 prize for his placement as a semi-finalist.  Congraulations to Jimmy on this honor. 

Jimmy Chung had this to say about his achievement: It was a complete surprise when I heard from Dr. Burch that I became a semifinalist. I was thrilled! I did not expect myself to become a semifinalist because I knew that there were other competitors across the country with strong talents, ideas and research papers. I am thankful and happy to have had this meaningful experience as a member of the AMSR program at Berkshire School! 

 

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