7th Annual Science Research Symposium Showcases Impressive Work of our Students!

Last night, Wheatley’s 7th Annual Research Symposium was held in our lobby (for the poster sessions) and a Room 450 (for the senior research presentations). The breadth and scope of the topics covered a large range of science research topics.

We are thankful to have such wonderfully motivated students along with the faculty to support their efforts. Particular thanks to our Secondary Chair for Science, Mrs. Alexis Pace, for her work with these students and her coordination of the evening. Thanks as well to Mr. DJ Paulson, a Science Research Teacher, for his assistance with the students and the evening.

Science Research Topics and Presentations

Introduction to Science Research Topics

  • Umar Ahmad – The Effects of Antihistamines on the Cell Cycle
  • Zain Akhtar – The Effect of Acid Rain on Lichen Growth
  • Manav Bansal – Identification of Candidate Therapeutics using a Drosophila Model
  • Anya Chabria – A New Look at Writing: Investigating the Presence of Fractal Patterns in the Sentence Structures of Fictional Classic Literature
  • Ubaidullah Hassan – The Effect of Acid Rain on Lichen Growth
  • Aarushi Jain – The Effects of Various Chemicals on Digestive Tract Bacteria
  • Viraj Jayam – Projecting onto the Generalized n-Sphere via Stereographic Projections
  • Olivia Palmieri – The Effects of Various Chemicals on Digestive Tract Bacteria
  • Iman Pirzada – The Ikea Effect and How it Affects Student Learning
  • Avani Rambharose – The Ikea Effect and How it Affects Student Learning
  • Avinash Reddy – Cloning: Balancing Science and Ethics
  • Samar Saleem – The Effects of Various Chemicals on Digestive Tract Bacteria
  • Brian Seo – The Effect of Acid Rain on Lichen Growth
  • Neil Shah – Efficiency of Composting Using Eisenia fetida
  • Arham Sheraz – The Effects of Antihistimines on the Cell Cycle
  • Dean Sheinman – Christopher Morley Park: Invasive vs Native Tree Species
  • Aaron Zachariah – Sustainability of Renewable Energy Sources
  • Lucy Zha – The Effect of Auto Correct on High School Students’ Classwork
  • Sharon Zhong – The Effect of Dairy Products As Compared To Alternative Dairy Products On Plant Development

Independent Science Research Topics

  • Sufia Ainechi – The Tipping Point of Buildings; An Analysis of Future Renewable Energy
  • *Karan Amin – Meditation’s Correlation with Higher Levels of Dispositional Mindfulness and Resilience and its Application to the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT)
  • Alex ArbitalJacoby – The Effects of Synthesized Silver Nanoparticles Compared to the Effects of 10 Nanometer Store-Bought Silver Nanoparticles on Energy Production of a Saccharomyces cerevisiae Microbial Fuel Cell
  • Zachary Azevedo – How Does Turf Affect Bacterial Growth?
  • Matthew Cornacchia – Analyzing Peridotites Ability to Sequester Carbon Dioxide as a Potential Solution to Global Warming
  • *Antony Deluxe – The Prevalence of Stigma Against Depression Amongst High School Students
  • *Lauren Druz – The Effects of Coconut Oil on Alzheimer’s-homologue APL-1 in C. elegans
  • *Roxane Ghadami – How can we revise our criminal justice system in order to  reduce racial profiling and stereotyping?
  • *Sana Haroon – MiR30-c Reduces Apob Secretion in HUH-7 Cells
  • *Farah Hasan – The Effects of Coconut Oil on Alzheimer’s-homologue APL-1 in C. elegans
  • Hitangee Jain – Pretreatment of Pyrabactin Increases the Tolerance of Brassica rapa to High Salinity Levels
  • Ansh Jhaveri – The Effects of Colloidal Silver on the Growth of E. coli
  • *Tiffany Jiao – The Construction of False Memories: Factors That Contribute to the Confabulation of Events and Production Errors in Memory Recall
  • Brett Katz – The Effect of BAMLET on Reversing the Antibiotic Resistance in Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria
  • Theodore Koutsoftas – The Effects of Synthesized Silver Nanoparticles Compared to the Effects of 10 Nanometer Store-Bought Nanoparticles on Energy Production of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Microbial Fuel Cell
  • *Abhishek Kumar – Performance Analysis of a Parallelized Restricted Boltzman Machine Artificial Neural Network Using OpenACC Framework and TaU Profiling System on the HPC1 High Performance Computer
  • Vani Kumar – Simulating the BRAF-D630045J12Ri Fusion in Hek-293t Cells Using the CRISPR/Cas9 Genetic Engineering System
  • John Li – Three Efficient Inventions That Work Together to Reduce the Time and Cost of Automobile Transmission Fluid and Filter Changes by 3/4th
  • Karen Li – TP53 Mutations as Potential Prognostic Markers for Specific Cancers: Analysis of Data from the Cancer Genome Atlas and the Internation Agency for Research on Cancer TP53 Database
  • Victor Li – TP53 Mutations as Potential Prognostic Markers for Specific Cancers: Analysis of Data from the Cancer Genome Atlas and the Internation Agency for Research on Cancer TP53 Database
  • Akiva Mohebban – The Effects of Synthesized Silver Nanoparticles Compared to the Effects of 10 Nanometer Store-Bought Nanoparticles on Energy Production of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Microbial Fuel Cell
  • Jacob Mohebban – Analyzing Peridotites Ability to Sequester Carbon Dioxide as a Potential Solution to Global Warming
  • *Alexandra Ostad – Analyzing Domestic Violence Health Education in Nassau and Suffolk County, New York
  • *Alex Pannullo – Exploring the Effect of the Installation of Metal Detectors on Student Perception of their School
  • *Mahesh Pitchayan – How Effectively the Musical Elements of the Leitmotifs in Star Wars: A New Hope Change with the Emotional Development of Characters
  • Michelle Raja – Reducing Toxicology of Silver Nanoparticles While Maintaining Maximal Antibacterial Properties Through Shape Control
  • Aidan Roldan – The Effects of Colloidal Silver on the Growth of E. coli
  • *Brooke Schwartz – The Effects of Age, Gender, and Degree of Education on Compassion and Empathy Levels of Parents
  • *Manan Shukla – Reprogramming Tumor Associated Macrophages for Optimizing Triple Negative Breast Cancer Therapy
  • *Vedant Singh – Evaluating the Effects of Graphhene-Loaded Poly(4-vinylpyridine) Electrospun Fiber Scaffolds and Spun-cast Thin Films on the Proliferation, Morphology, and Differentiation of Dental Pulp Stem Cells in vitro
  • Rebecca Sparacio – The Identification and Characterization of the DELLA Protein in Lemna minor

* Denotes AP Research participant


Ally and Saman are National Merit Award Winners!

Congratulations to Ally Kim and Saman Suleman for being recognized as National Merit Scholars! This impressive recognition is a testimony to these students’ efforts and accomplishment throughout their high school years!

As National Merit Scholars, these three students join approximately 7,500 students from across the country as this year’s National Merit $2500 Scholarship winners. The 2,500 Merit Scholar designees were chosen from a talent pool of more than 15,000 outstanding Finalists in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Program.

National Merit $2500 Scholarship winners are the Finalists in each state judged to have the strongest combination of accomplishments, skills, and potential for success in rigorous college studies. The number of winners named in each state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the nation’s graduating high school seniors.


These Scholars were selected by a committee of college admissions officers and high school counselors, who appraised a substantial amount of information submitted by both the Finalists and their high schools: the academic record, including difficulty level of subjects studied and grades earned; scores from two standardized tests; contributions and leadership in school and community activities; an essay written by the Finalist; and a recommendation written by a high school official. Scholars may use their awards at any regionally accredited U.S. college or university.

This year’s competition for National Merit Scholarships began in October 2016 when
over 1.5 million juniors in some 22,000 high schools took the PSAT, which served as an initial screen of program entrants. Last fall, the highest-scoring participants in each state, representing less than one percent of the nation’s high school seniors, were named Semifinalists on a state representational basis.

From the Semifinalist group, 15,000 students met the very high academic standards and other requirements to advance to the Finalist level of the competition. By the conclusion of the 2016 program, about 7,500 Finalists earned the “Merit Scholar” title and received a total of about $33 million in college scholarships.


Students Compete in New York History Day!

On Sunday, 22 April, thirteen EWSD regional winners of Long Island History Day traveled to Cooperstown, New York to participate in the New York State History Day competition.  Their participation in this competition was as a result of their recognition at the Long Island Regional History Day in March. The contestants spent the weeks between the two contests tweaking their websites, documentaries, and exhibits and worked hard to present their research to teachers, historians, and archivists at the state level.

Students were accompanied by Mr. Eckers, Mr. Shanahan, and Ms. Ilkiw.  Between the initial interviews and the run-offs, the students enjoyed a beautiful spring day near the shores of Otsego Lake, visiting the Farmers’ Museum and the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Wheatley students competing in the State Competition included:

Senior Individual Exhibit

  • Rahul Ajmera: The 1902 Anthracite Coal Strike: A Successful Compromise

Junior Group Website

  • Maia Cale and Janice Zeng: Women’s Road to Enlightenment Coeducation

Junior Group Documentary

  • Lauren Hackett, Charlotte Iannone, Victoria Potrapeluk and Jaina Shah: Helen Hunt Jackson

Having placed in the top two of their category in Cooperstown, Maia Cale and Janice Zeng (Junior Group Website) will be advancing to the National History Day finals in Maryland in June! These Wheatley students will be accompanied by Grant Callahan and Benjamin Casella from Willets Road.

Congratulations to all of the students who competed!

[Thanks to Mr. Eckers for some of the write-up and the photos!]



Jacob Ribotsky Competes in DECA National Conference!

On 21 April, junior Jacob Ribotsky journeyed to Atlanta, Georgia to compete in the 2018 DECA International Career Development Conference (ICDC). DECA, a student-centered club prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management. Only approximately 18,000 (of the near one million DECA members around the world), qualify to attend this conference.

Jacob qualified the National Conference through his performance at New York State’s DECA competition in early March. At the NYS Competition, Jacob placed in the top 5 of participants in the Entrepreneurial series. This specific series consists of all participants taking a written exam, one that tests overall business literacy and small business management, while also having to partake in two “role plays,” where a participant must take the role of an entrepreneur. Jacob earned a third-place finish at States.

The first Wheatley student to attend this conference, Jacob performed quite well at the 2018 National ICDC Conference! Congratulations!


Wheatley Captures 2018 National History Bowl Championship!

Earlier today, our Wheatley Brainstormers captured the 2018 National History Bowl JV Championship (Small Schools)! Last week, the team was recognized by the Board of Education in advance of its trip to DC for the finals.

Advised by Joseph Crotty, the team consists of:

  • Rahul Ajmera
  • Patrick Brady
  • Peter Cuomo
  • Frederick Lin

They arrived in DC for the competition on Thursday evening (managing to tour for a bit with our Regional Science Bowl Champions) and wrapped up the competition earlier today.

In addition to the team victory, freshman Freddy Lin earned recognition as a US History Bee National Semifinalist!

Congratulations to the team! Thanks to Mr. Crotty for leading the team on this wonderful journey!

[Thanks to Mr. Crotty for the photos!]


Wheatley Regional Championship Science Bowl Team is in DC for the National Championship!

On Thursday morning, I had the pleasure of accompanying our Regional Science Quiz Bowl team to Washington, DC, for the National Championship Competition. The team consists of:

  • John Li (12th Grade)
  • Karen Li (10th Grade)
  • Victor Li (9th Grade)
  • Vedant Singh (11th Grade)
  • Elan Mizhiritsky (12th Grade)

The team advisor, Alexis Pace, joined us earlier this afternoon.

The Science Quiz Bowl is sponsored by the Department of Energy. Making it to the National Finals is a significant accomplishment. As such, the students are being treated like minor celebrities, with flights and shuttle service paid for by the Science Bowl Competition, commemorative shirts and other paraphernalia, and a varied and fascinating set of activities.

After a welcome assembly and some dinner on Thursday, finalists where brought to DC for a wonderful evening tour of some of the monuments, including the Jefferson Memorial, the Korean War Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial and the Vietnam Memorial. As the we were touring these sites, we connected with Mr. Crotty and our Brainstormers team—they were in DC for the finals of the JV Quiz Bowl! We enjoyed bringing our groups together for a bit of time as we toured the monuments on a beautiful evening!

This morning, students were treated to a plenary presentation by the mathematician, computer scientist (and MacArthur Fellow) Craig Gentry. It was an outstanding presentation about his breakthrough in fully homomorphic encryption. Dr. Gentry was followed by the Secretary of the Department of Energy, Rick Perry, who highlighted the importance of the research and work being done on the country’s various labs.

The competition begins with an opening round on Saturday, culminating in the finals on Monday. Good luck to the team!



Wheatley Students Succeed at Long Island Mathematics Fair!

On Friday afternoon, 17 Wheatley students headed to Hofstra University in order to compete in the annual Mathematics Fair. Students competing included:

Grade 9

  • Manav Bansal (“Taylor, Power and Geometric Series”)
  • Anya Chabria (“Fractal Geometry: The Mathematics Uniting the Universe”)
  • Sarah Hassan (“The Biostatistics and Epidemiology Involved in Determining Disease Patterns”)
  • Viraj Jayam (“Projecting Onto the Generalized n-Sphere via Stereographic Projections”)
  • Eric Ness (“System of Numerations through History”)

Grade 10

  • Madison Ramos (“The Mathematics Behind Magic”)
  • Diya Shah (“Boolean Algebra”)
  • Rebecca Sparacio (“Determining the Association between Extracurricular Activity Participation and Performance on the SAT and ACT; An Observational Study”)
  • Trenton Wong (“Approximating Pi”)
  • Emily Yagoda (“The Math Behind Bitcoin and Cryptocurrencies”)
  • Sharon Zhong (“Finding the Figure for Foundational Failure”)

Grade 11

  • Manan Shukla (“The Banach-Tarski paradox”)
  • Vedant Singh (“Using Optimization to Increase Production Efficiency”)

Grade 12

  • Sufia Ainechi (“The Tipping Point of Buildings”)
  • Michaela Balboni (“The Fractal Component of Fibonacci’s Spiral and the Balboni Spiral”)
  • Abhishek Kumar (“Performance of a Parallelized Restricted Boltzman Machine”)
  • Justin Vega (“Using Mathematical Modeling to Calculate Neutron Cross-Sections Probability Distributions for Reactions on Zero-Spin Nuclei”)

While the aforementioned students were presenting their research, Maryrose Ambrose and Robert Teseo served as judges.

At the end of the competition, 9 Wheatley students earned Gold Medals, 3 Wheatley students earned Silver Medals and 5 Wheatley students earned Bronze Medals. Congratulations to the following medal winners:

Gold Medal Winners

  • Sufia Ainechi
  • Manav Bansal
  • Sarah Hassan
  • Viraj Jayam
  • Manan Shukla
  • Sharon Zhong

Silver Medal Winners

  • Michaela Balboni
  • Anya Chabria
  • Madison Ramos
  • Justin Vega

Bronze Medal Winners

  • Abhishek Kumar
  • Eric Ness
  • Diya Shah
  • Vedant Singh
  • Rebecca Sparacio

Thanks to Mr. Teseo, we have some photos from the competition!