A team of juniors from Chesapeake Science Point has taken the First Place Grand Award in the 53rd annual Anne Arundel County Regional Science and Engineering Expo.

    In addition, two individual projects from Broadneck High School and a team of brothers from North County High School share the Second Place Grand Award prize.  The announcement would have taken place at the Regional Science and Engineering Expo award ceremony last month, but the event was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

    All four projects have earned the right to be submitted as official representatives of Anne Arundel County Public Schools to the 2020 Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (Regeneron ISEF), which had been scheduled to occur May 10-15 in Anaheim, Calif., but has been canceled.

    The team of Saja Mahdi and Rafee Mirza claimed the First Place Award at the Expo with their project “Biospectroscopy: The Future of Breast Cancer Detection.”  Their project involved developing different breast cancer cell lines and analyzing them in a Ramen Spectrometer.  The subsequent data was placed in a machine learning program to determine if the computer could accurately group the cells and determine if breast cancer was present. This research may lead to lower cost and faster test results when screening for breast cancer.

    The project done by North County High School brothers Imaad and Aaban Syed, titled “Measure ρ - Optimize Heat Transfer,” earned them a share of the Grand Award. The Syeds’ project focused on measuring the thermal resistivity of soil in varying states and its effect on heat transfer in buried electrical cables. 

    Broadneck High School had two projects win a share of the Grand Award Prize: Lia Barrow’s project “Cell Migration” and Katheryne Lochart’s “Getting Cryptic with Bioinformatics.” Lia’s project looked at cell migration models to test for therapeutics that could alleviate the effects of Myelodysplastic Syndrome, a form of bone marrow cancer, in the blood. Katheryne’s project examined using bacterial RNA as a data storage system.

    More than 275 projects in 20 categories were presented by student researchers from across the county in grades 6 through 12 at the Expo. Individual student awards and prizes worth thousands of dollars were previously announced and distributed to students.  These awards were provided by supporting organizations including Educational Systems Federal Credit Union the headline sponsor, Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association, Anne Arundel Community College, Clean Air Partners, Friends of Jug Bay, International Council on Systems Engineering, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration,  Society of Women Engineers, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy/U.S. Marine Corps Office of Naval Research, and the U.S. Public Health Services to name just a few.

    The Anne Arundel County Regional Science and Engineering Expo is dedicated to promoting science education along with recognizing and rewarding student achievement in science. In addition to the overall first place and grand award winners, approximately 100 county middle and high school students earned first-place awards at the Science and Engineering Expo, ranging from special awards from community organizations to category awards based on guidelines from Regeneron ISEF.

    To find out more about the Grand Award Projects click here:

    Biospectroscopy: Future of Breast Cancer Detection - Saja Mahdi & Rafee Mirza

    Measure p - Optimize Heat Transfer - Imaad Syed & Aaban Syed

    Getting Cryptic with Bioinformatics - Katheryne Lochart

    Cell Migration - Lia Barrow


    Grand Prize Winners  Second Place Winners

    Second Place Winners  Second Place Winners


  • The Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) is the world’s largest international pre-college science competition. Approximately 1,700 high school students from over 75 countries, regions, and territories are awarded the opportunity to showcase their independent research and compete for approximately $4 million in prizes. Regeneron ISEF unites these top young scientific minds, showcasing their talents on an international stage, where doctoral level scientists review and judge their work. Millions of students worldwide compete each year in local and school-sponsored science fairs; the first and second place grand prize winners of our Science Expo will be recognized as finalists in the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair held this May in Anaheim California.

    These results will be announced later when school is back in session.

    Regeneron ISEF A Program of Society for Science and the Public