Two Lincoln Academy sophomores entered projects in this year’s Maine State Science Fair, held March 25 at Colby College in Waterville.
Ezra Smith entered his prototype for bone conduction headphones, which he described as an “audio transducer placed on the bones behind the ear, that directly vibrates and conducts sound.” Although the idea still needs to be polished before it is ready for mass production, Ezra feels that the underlying technology is fascinating and worth pursuing. The Science Fair judges agreed, awarding him both the REACH MMSA award, and a second place prize in Physics/Astronomy.
Phong Mai created a virtual pet that can be cared for by users like the 90s Tamagotchi game. He describes his project as using “black and white old-fashioned graphics. When the pet is hungry, you feed it, when it needs attention, you play with it.” Mai said that this project has motivated him to work more on computer programming, because it has re-awakened the curiosity and excitement he had when he was young and first started playing with computers, using only simple software.
Maya Crosby, Director of Innovation and Technology, facilitated the student’s science fair preparations. “They worked diligently on their projects for weeks, put together quality poster presentations and prepared for interviews conducted by at least five adult judges on the scientific details – while maintaining a great attitude!”
The 2017 Maine State Science Fair was held on March 25 at Colby College in Waterville. It was jointly produced by The Jackson Laboratory and the Maine Math and Science Alliance. Students from grades 9-12 at all schools around Maine were eligible to participate, competing for awards, scholarships and the grand prize – the chance to compete at the national level. The College of the Atlantic, the University of Maine, and the University of Southern Maine give substantial scholarship awards to students who students who excel in the science fair. Companies and organizations like NASA and Texas Instruments also contribute special awards such as the Stockholm Water Prize.
“We are hoping to grow Lincoln Academy’s participation in the Science Fair a little each year,” said Crosby, “We had one student enter last year, two this year, and we are hoping for more next year. Whether or not students win awards, participation a worthwhile experience, as they get to interact with judges, teachers, and other science-minded students. Everyone leaves inspired.”
Participant Ezra Smith agreed. “I enjoyed the science fair very much, especially seeing all the other amazing projects from the other students. Plus, the judges are all skilled scientists and usually have encouraging bits of information to share. Overall it was a good experience that I would recommend to anyone!”