Carnegie Science Center Announces Winners of Covestro Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair




More than 1,000 students representing schools throughout the region competed last week in Carnegie Science Center’s 80th annual Covestro Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair—one of the oldest and largest science fairs in the nation. Awards totaling more than $1 million in cash and scholarships were announced at a ceremony at Heinz Field on Saturday.

Four students were selected to represent the region at the Intel International Science & Engineering Fair (ISEF), which will be held in Phoenix from May 12–17. These young scientists are:

  • Rachel Bina, North Allegheny High School, with the project Identification of Vibrio phage from North Park Lake in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania
  • Jakobi Deslouches, Pittsburgh Allderdice High School, with the project Effect of Salamander Peptides on the Growth of Bacterial Pathogens
  • Aria Eppinger, Winchester Thurston Upper School, with the project Glyphosphate & Human Microbiomes
  • Sanjay Seshan, Fox Chapel Area High School, with the project Phase 2: Improving Autonomous Vehicle Performance Using Infrastructure-Based Sensing

ISEF will bring together about 1,800 students from more than 75 nations, regions, and territories to compete for scholarships, internships, scientific field trips, and the grand prize: a trip to attend the Nobel Prize Ceremonies in Stockholm, Sweden.

Three students were selected to receive Carnegie Science Awards for their remarkable projects. The Carnegie Science Awards recognize and celebrate the region’s top minds in science, technology, research, and education. The awards will be conferred at the 23rd Annual Carnegie Science Awards Celebration on May 10 at Carnegie Science Center.

Awardees are:

  • Summer Hartman, Baden Academy Charter School, with the project Effects of Bentonite Clay on Daphnia
  • Olina Mukherjee, Kentucky Avenue School, with the project Automating Computational Image Analysis for Biological Experiments
  • Eleanor Barth-Wu, The Ellis School, with the project Formaldehyde Production During E-Liquid Degradation

Among other honors, 74 students earned Perseverance Awards for longevity of participation in the science fair, and 19 universities awarded a total of 96 scholarships.

Category Award winners receive cash prizes and medals. First-place Category Award winners are also given the opportunity to display their project board in the lobby of Carnegie Science Center through Sunday, April 7.

The first-place Category Award winners are:

Junior Division (Grade 6)

  • Behavioral and Consumer Sciences: Samuel Tarr, Community Day School
  • Biological Sciences: Summer Hartman, Baden Academy Charter School
  • Chemistry: Sasha Hoffman, Queen of Angels Catholic School
  • Physical Sciences & Engineering: Beatrice Boselli, Fanny Edel Falk Laboratory School

Intermediate Division (Grades 7-8)

  • Behavioral and Social Science: Anthony Spalvieri, Saint Killian Parish School
  • Biology: David Thomas, Holy Cross Academy
  • Chemistry: Charles Hickenboth, Saint John Paul II Homeschool Co-op
  • Computer Science/Math: Olina Mukherjee, Kentucky Avenue School
  • Consumer Science: Anthony Florian, Mary Queen of Apostles Catholic School
  • Earth/Space/Environment: Arvind Seshan, Dorseyville Middle School
  • Engineering/Robotics: Avi Kopec, St. Thomas More
  • Medicine/Health/Microbiology: Colton Brenneman, Freeport Area Middle School
  • Physics: Jesse Hilko, Freeport Area Middle School

 Senior Division (Grades 9-12)

  • Behavioral and Social Science: Rajeev Godse, Fox Chapel Area High School
  • Biology: Ethan Schroeder, St. Joseph High School
  • Chemistry: Eleanor Barth-Wu, The Ellis School
  • Computer Science/Math: Justin Waltrip, Pine-Richland High School
  • Earth/Space/Environment: Ashna Patel, North Allegheny High School
  • Engineering/Robotics: Joshua Mbogo, Indiana Area High School
  • Medicine/Health/Microbiology: Aria Eppinger, Winchester Thurston Upper School
  • Physics: Max Guthrie, Mt. Lebanon High School


About Carnegie Science Center

Carnegie Science Center is dedicated to inspiring learning and curiosity by connecting science and technology with everyday life. By making science both relevant and fun, the Science Center’s goal is to increase science literacy in the region and motivate young people to seek careers in science and technology. One of the four Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, the Science Center is Pittsburgh’s premier science exploration destination, reaching more than 700,000 people annually through its hands-on exhibits, camps, classes, and off-site education programs.