Top Prince William County student scientists bring home the prize at the VJAS Science Symposium
Posted on 05/29/2018
Three Benton MS students with teacher

Three Benton Middle School students represented Prince William County at the 2018 Virginia Junior Academy of Sciences Research Symposium at Longwood University. Nico Morgan (eighth grade), Arman Lateef (seventh grade), and Tony Bright (seventh grade) presented their science fair projects and research at the symposium in front of panels of renowned Virginia scientists.

 “The students have worked for months on their projects,” said Debra Peterman, Benton VJAS sponsor. “They lost sleep and missed fun on weekends, all to represent Benton at this event. Just being accepted at VJAS to present is quite an achievement. I’m so proud of their hard work, dedication, and accomplishments.”

Each student conducted multi-week experiments, submitted 10-page research papers for scholarly review (complete with citations), developed multi-media presentations, and practiced for weeks presenting to teachers, classmates, friends, and family.

Their work did not go unnoticed by the judges. With more than 1,000 submitted research papers, each Prince William County student placed in their categories. Morgan’s presentation, Composting is the way to GROW earned second place in the Ecology and Earth Sciences category, while Lateef and Bright’s presentation From Waste to Wealth: Making Millivolts from Microbes! earned top prize in their category, Plant Sciences and Microbiology.

 “It’s been an honor to represent Benton at VJAS,” explained the young scientists. “Mrs. Peterman really challenged us and believed in us to be the very best we can be. She never let us give up, no matter how challenging things got. We are so lucky to be at Benton where we are taught that no matter how young scientists might be, we can still change the world.”

Each project abstract will be published in June, in the VJAS Annual Meeting Proceedings publication.