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Jesuit Students Light Up NW Science Expo

From Left to Right: Rupert Li, Soumik Chakraborty, Dev-Rishi Udata, Mithra Karamchedu, and Wenjun Hou were some of Jesuit's competitors at the Northwest Science Expo.


In April, 10 Jesuit students advanced to the finals in the Northwest Science Expo (NWSE) virtual fair presented by Portland State University. From Animal Sciences to Robotics to Bioengineering, students competed in a variety of categories. Rupert Li '20, Dev-Rishi Udata '22, and Darsh Mandera '23 took home first place in their respective divisions.

"The students had to adapt to the virtual fair model quickly, and the end results were remarkable. I am so proud of every student who competed this year," says Dr. Lara Shamieh, Jesuit Biology Teacher. This year Dr. Shamieh was awarded Oregon Junior Science and Humanities Symposium Teacher of the Year.

"This world really needs scientists and mathematicians right now given the public health concerns and financial uncertainty," says Principal Paul Hogan. "Knowing that these students combine their analytical minds with creative imaginations and caring, human hearts, brings us such hope during this moment in time."

According to NWSE, 168 projects were evaluated and adjudicated. Jesuit's freshman participants finished particularly strong and with great enthusiasm for the years ahead. "This was my first time competing in a high school science fair. The help and recommendations Dr. Shamieh gave to each of us definitely helped Team Jesuit get the final results we wanted," says Vladimir Mamchik '23, who placed 2nd in Engineering (Bioengineering and Materials).

"Dr. Shamieh is truly an inspiring teacher. Over the years we have seen her at science fairs encouraging any child at these fairs that genuinely tries to demonstrate an interest in science," says Jesuit parent Murali Karamchedu. "We have seen her motivate, guide, correct and inspire all students, not just her Jesuit cohort. She infects them with the right passion and the right mindset."

Congratulations to all of our student scientists for their commitment to scientific inquiry and pursuit of personal excellence!

Below is a full listing of JHS award recipients:

Rupert Li '20
Mathematical Sciences - 1st place
Mu Alpha Theta Award
NWSE ISEF Finalist
Best of Fair - Physical Sciences

Marissa Kuo '21
Samuel Glassman: Chemistry - 3rd place
Outstanding Applied or Practical Chemistry Project

Wenjun Hou '21
Engineering (Electrical and Mechanical) 2nd place (tie)
Outstanding Project Award

Dev-Rishi Udata '22
Biochemistry - 1st place

Elina Desplande '22
NWSE Participant

Alan Ma '23
Animal Sciences - 2nd place
Naval Excellence in Science and Engineering Award

Darsh Mandera '23
Computer Science and Robotics - 1st place
Oregon State University $5,000 scholarship
GBSE ISEF Finalist

Vladimir Mamchik '23
Engineering (Bioengineering and Materials) - 2nd place

Samyak Shrimali '23
Engineering (Electrical and Mechanical) - 2nd place (tie)
GBSE ISEF Finalist

Mithra Karamchedu '23
Microbiology - Honorable Mention

Read more about the Virtual Fair on the NWSE website here.