Thomas County Central High School students brought home several wins from region science fair, including two overall winners in the high school division.
The Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College Region Science & Engineering Fair was held Friday, Feb. 12. Ten projects advanced to state competition and one project was selected as an alternate.
Students advancing to state competition are: Faythe Choate and Hailey Newman, Sierra Stephens and Kennedy Ward, Desiree Hough, Emily Mitchell and Emily Owens, Jordan Bush and Hannah Dixon, C’lee Kornegay, Anna Jense and Tyler Williamson, Hailey Ferrel, Kealie Bennett, and Katelyn Hancock. Alternate is Caroline Pope.
“Our participation in science fair has been fairly consistent over the past several years, but as the students gain experience and see the work of students at higher level fairs, the quality of our projects has improved,” TCCHS teacher and fair advisor Laura Kornegay said. “We have students who conducted research to share in venues besides the traditional region and state science and engineering fairs, and that is exciting.”
In the senior division (high school), sophomore C’lee Kornegay won first place overall and Faythe Choate and Hailey Newman’s project won second place overall.
C'lee's project was "The Effect of AgNP on Chlorella." She studied the effects of silver nanoparticles on algae.
Choate and Newman’s project was "When Things Aren’t So Rosy." They studied the effects of crowding on rosy red minnows.
“I’m exhilarated and it was wonderful to know that our hard work was being recognized,” Choate said.
Another student who advanced to state, junior Jordan Bush, decided to participate in science fair this year after Kornegay, her AP Environmental Science teacher, offered an interesting project idea.
“She offered to assist anyone who was interested in doing a project in Thomasville’s Lost Creek Forest,” Bush said. “The idea interested me because the opportunity sounded different than any boring or mainstream project I had completed in the past.”
Overall, students found the region judges to be helpful and encouraging.
Choate expected the judges’ process “to be casual but also insightful” and appreciated how they “dove deep into our knowledge of the topic and were interested in learning of our discoveries.”
Bush found the judging to be a fun experience.
“I found it to actually be an enjoyable experience,” she said. “My partner and I were able to have fun explaining our project to the interviewer while also taking his constructive criticism into account.”
The Georgia Science & Engineering Fair (GSEF) will be March 31-April 2 at the University of Georgia. TCCHS students advancing to state are currently preparing for the competition.
“My partner and I plan to amp up our interview skills as well as find new ways to amplify the purpose of our research,” Choate said.
Bush and her partner are preparing for state by studying feedback and notes.
“We will be utilizing any feedback and criticism from the region competition judges to build onto our current work,” she said.
Kornegay wants to encourage and be helpful to the students in the hope that they will continue on after the fair ends.
“I’m thrilled we have 15 students who are going to advance to state,” she said. “I hope their experience at state will encourage them to continue their research.”