Science

Two Win New National High School Science Award

By Andrew Trotter — April 28, 2004 2 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

A new national competition to judge high school students’ research projects on epidemiology—the branch of medical science that investigates the spread and control of diseases—took place in Washington last week.

Read more about the Young Epidemiology Scholars Competition from the College Board.

The Young Epidemiology Scholars Competition wrapped up its first year by awarding $50,000 college scholarships to two high school students from a group of 60 finalists, juniors and seniors who had won regional and state competitions involving nearly 600 entries nationwide.

All told, 123 students won a total of nearly $500,000 in scholarships from the first year of the competition, which is run by the New York City-based College Board and is sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, of Princeton, N.J.

The top two projects were an analysis of policies in response to the use of smallpox as a terrorist weapon, and a study of teenagers’ motivations for using indoor tanning booths and their knowledge of its health risks.

Benjamin M. Eidelson, 17, of Merion Station, Pa., a Philadelphia suburb, conducted the study of smallpox policies. He used data from previous outbreaks in a series of computer simulations, testing more than 19,000 possible outcomes based on different response strategies and different kinds of demographic challenges.

Mr. Eidelson, a senior at Akiba Hebrew Academy, which enrolls 336 students in grades 6 through 12, concluded that “ring vaccination,” in which all individuals in a set area around a smallpox outbreak are vaccinated, was about as effective as mass vaccination “when a very substantial proportion of new cases could be detected and isolated almost immediately after infection.”

But his computer simulations also found that ring vaccination was more susceptible than mass vaccination to complications when confronted with an unfortunate stream of accidents or a particularly vulnerable community.

Risks of Tanning

The other top winner, Robert Levine, 18, of Lincolnshire, Ill., studied artificial tanning by teenagers who attend his public school, Adlai E. Stevenson High School. In a survey, the senior asked about their attitudes toward tanning and their knowledge of the health risks.

Nearly one-fourth of the 400 students surveyed, a stratified random sample of the school’s 4,400 students, said they used indoor tanning booths; older students did so significantly more than younger ones; and girls were nearly five times more likely than boys to go to tanning booths, he found. Nine out of 10 tanners said they did so to improve their appearance.

Despite the popularity of indoor tanning, students recognized the health risks of exposure to ultraviolet rays. Nine out of 10 of the students surveyed believed indoor tanning was unhealthy, but only half the respondents reported using sunscreen regularly, with girls using sunscreen more often than boys.

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Data Webinar
Education Insights with Actionable Data to Create More Personalized Engagement
The world has changed during this time of pandemic learning, and there is a new challenge faced in education regarding how we effectively utilize the data now available to educators and leaders. In this session
Content provided by Microsoft
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
Accelerate Learning with Project-Based Learning
Earlier this year, the George Lucas Educational Foundation released four new studies highlighting how project-based learning (PBL) helps accelerate student learning—across age groups, multiple disciplines, and different socio-economic statuses. With this year’s emphasis on unfinished
Content provided by SmartLab Learning
School & District Management Live Online Discussion Principal Overload: How to Manage Anxiety, Stress, and Tough Decisions
According to recent surveys, more than 40 percent of principals are considering leaving their jobs. With the pandemic, running a school building has become even more complicated, and principals' workloads continue to grow. If we

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Science Opinion Q&A Collections: Science Instruction
Eighty science educators answer 10 years' worth of questions about science instruction.
4 min read
Images shows colorful speech bubbles that say "Q," "&," and "A."
iStock/Getty
Science Opinion Four Good Science Teaching Strategies & How to Use Them
Three science educators share their "go-to" teaching strategies, including encouraging student talk & implementing project-based learning.
11 min read
Images shows colorful speech bubbles that say "Q," "&," and "A."
iStock/Getty
Science Opinion The Three Most Effective Instructional Strategies for Science—According to Teachers
Three science educators share their favorite instructional strategies, including incorporating a sense of play in their classes.
9 min read
Images shows colorful speech bubbles that say "Q," "&," and "A."
iStock/Getty
Science Make Science Education Better, More Equitable, Says National Panel
States must take steps to ensure that all students get a fair shot at learning science, says the National Academies of Science report.
3 min read
Illustration of father and child working on computer.
Getty