Local students dominate Maui Science and Engineering Fair

Both Molokai students and teachers were honored last Thursday at the 54th annual Maui Schools’ Science and Engineering Fair. Photo courtesy Kimberly Svetin.

Both Molokai students and teachers were honored last Thursday at the 54th annual Maui Schools’ Science and Engineering Fair. Photo courtesy Kimberly Svetin.

The commitment to STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education on Molokai has never been more evident than it was at last week’s 54th annual Maui Schools’ Science and Engineering Fair. Three of the top 10 projects advancing to the state competition come from Molokai. Out of the 15 honorable mention winners, seven come from here.

By placing second overall at the Fair, Sarah Jenkins, a Molokai High School 10th grader, earned a trip to the Intel International Science Fair in Phoenix from May 12-17.

Jenkins showed her project, titled “Artificial Nesting Structures For Hawaiian Coot Nesting Success,” last Thursday at the fair held at the Velma McWayne Santos Community Center on Maui. Jenkins also will be attending the Hawaii State Science and Engineering Fair from April 7 to 9 at the Hawaii Convention Center on Oahu.

Molokai teachers were honored as well. Judges for the Maui science fair recognized four Maui teachers for their outstanding efforts to support students in science, engineering and technology. This year’s winners were Jennifer Ainoa and Scott Hemenway from Molokai Middle and Lee DeRouin and Malia Lee from Molokai High.

Three other Molokai students advanced to the state Science and Engineering Fair. Eleventh graders Xrystina Bicoy and Shella Keahi from Molokai High showed a project called “Turning Erosion Into Accretion.” Middle School eighth grader Lily Jenkins will go to state because of her project “Effects of Non-Native Water Lettuce in Canal at Puko’o Pond.”

Honorable mention winners from Molokai, with their grade and project name, included:

• Momi Afelin, ninth grade, Molokai High School, “It’s Electric.”
• Edel Mae Alvarez, 10th grade, Remelie Manuel, 11th grade, MayRose Ragonton, 12th grade, Molokai High School, “Okra Mucilage in Handmade Paper.”
• Kea’a Davis, 9th grade, Molokai High School, “Relationships Between Personality Type and Learning Type.”
• Noah Keanini, 7th grade, Molokai Middle, “The Antenna Test: A Test to Find the Best T.V. Antenna.”
• Erik Svetin, 8th grade, Molokai Middle, “Additional Stitch Effect on a Baseball.”

Specialized awards were presented to these Molokai students:

• Monsanto Hawaii Award, Edel Mae Alvarez, Remelie Manuel, May Rose Ranontan.
• American Psychological Association, Kea’a Davis.
• Association for Women Geoscientist, Xrystina Bicoy and Shell Keahi, Molokai High.
• Yale Science & Engineering Association, Caulin Angelesa, Paul Parker, Molokai High.
• Air Force, Sarah Jenkins.

Both Molokai High School and Middle School would like to acknowledge financial support from Dow AgroSciences (Molokai High) and Goodfellow Bros. (Molokai Middle School). Both companies gave substantial donations, which helped with travel expenses to Maui.


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