King Students Bring Home Wins From Connecticut STEM Fair
King Students Bring Home Wins From Connecticut STEM Fair

A group of upper school students participated in the 2022 Connecticut State STEM Fair, which took place virtually in early February. Students in the Advanced Science Program for Independent Research and Engineering (ASPIRE) presented their original research from their summer 2021 internships in professional laboratories in and around New York City. Additionally, four upper school students competed in the state fair after standing out at King School’s Science Fair last spring. 

Gouri Krishnan ’23 won first place in the Environmental Sciences category for her design of electrochromic color-changing window glass. When the glass is activated, it changes color to keep heat energy in or out, depending on the season. The design reduces energy loss and indirectly mitigates global climate change by reducing the amount of carbon emissions buildings give off while maintaining indoor climate control. 

Gouri’s work also earned her a scholarship, and her success marks King School’s first win at a state-wide science fair competition. 

"I'm so honored to place first in the Environmental Sciences category,” said Gouri. “Although this was my first time competing in the CT STEM Fair, I'm more proud to be King's first statewide winner. I would not have been able to do this without the support and guidance of my lab mentor, Dr. Schulman, and the entire ASPIRE Program. I am excited to continue this research in my senior year."

King’s success continued as three more students brought home wins in their respective categories as well.

John Russell ’22 earned fourth place in the Environmental Sciences category for his electrochemical cell, which de-acidifies ocean water and extracts dissolved carbon species from the water and air to reverse global warming. 

“I am thrilled for my class' success in this fair and grateful to Dr. Schulman and my peers for their feedback and support,” John said.

Ben Persily ’23 earned third place in the Health & Medical Sciences category for his stem cell project, which aims to alleviate the symptoms of cystic fibrosis. 

King Students Bring Home Wins From Connecticut STEM Fair

"It's such an honor to place in the top three in the most competitive category at the CT STEM Fair,” said Ben. This is his second year competing in the event. “Last year, my top ranking in the King science fair earned me the opportunity to join the ASPIRE students in submitting a research proposal for the state fair, but I did not place. To place this year feels amazing."

Adam Nomani ’22 placed fourth in the Physical Sciences category. Adam modified air conditioning systems using phase-change material to provide passive cooling in the summer without creating carbon emissions, his take on mitigating climate change. 

“This is my first time being on the podium,” said Adam. “It felt really rewarding to finally be able to accomplish this. I am extremely grateful for the opportunities provided by the ASPIRE program.”

Dr. Victoria Schulman manages the ASPIRE program, working with students on honing their research and presentation skills. 

“I am so proud of everyone for all the hard work they put into their projects, and it’s especially exciting to watch them enjoy the fruits of their labor,” said Dr. Schulman. “Ironically, we got the notification that they had won while we were in class together. It was really nice to celebrate as a group, and my favorite part was watching the students call their parents and hearing their parents shriek in excitement on the other end of the line. It brings a huge smile to my face to see our students succeed.”

The ASPIRE program is supported by an endowed fund that was established in 2018 by Margharet, Frank, Bea ’15, and William ’17 Nash to support select students with demonstrated ability and interest in achieving true excellence within science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in global competition preparation and laboratory research experiences. If you are interested in further supporting this opportunity for students, please contact the Development Office to discuss how your gift can help.