Maine students win awards at Intel International Science and Engineering Fair

Paige Brown and Demetri Maxim, two Maine high school students who captured top honors at the Maine State Science Fair, are among the Grand Award winners at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) in Phoenix, Ariz., the world’s largest science fair.

Bangor High School senior Brown, who won second place in the 2016 Maine State Science Fair, took a First Award of $3,000 in the category of Environmental Engineering for her project, “Developing inexpensive calcium alginate based scaffolds for phosphate sorption in stormwater.” On March 15 Brown won a first-place, $150,000 award at the separate Intel Science Talent Search.

Maxim, a Gould Academy senior and three-time first-place winner of the Maine State Science Fair, won a First Award of $3,000 in the Translational Medical Science category for his project, “Bioengineering functional kidney tissue from human pluripotent stem cells: a promising new treatment for kidney disease.”

At the Intel ISEF special awards ceremony on May 12, Maxim’s project also received a First Award of $1,200 from the China Association for Science and Technology (CAST), a Third Award of $1,200 from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and a First Award of $500 from the Patent and Trademark Office Society.

Last summer Maxim participated in The Jackson Laboratory’s historic Summer Student Program, conducting an independent research project in the laboratory of kidney researcher Assistant Professor Ron Korstanje, Ph.D.

The Maine State Science Fair, which is organized by The Jackson Laboratory and the Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance, covered the travel expenses for Brown, Maxim and 2016 third-place winner Sydney McDonald and their mentors to travel to the Intel ISEF.

The Jackson Laboratory offers educational programs for scientists throughout their careers—from STEM education for high school students and training for science and math teachers to courses and conferences for experienced researchers defining the cutting edge of genomics research and specialized training for physicians interested in incorporating genetics and genomics into their practices.