Freshman to compete in regional science fair

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Submitted by Sameeksha Jayaprakash

Freshman Sameeksha Jayaprakash worked on her project over different types of antibiotics for the fair.

Isabel Young, Staff Reporter

Judging for the Austin Regional Science Fair will begin today  and last for the next 10 days. Freshman Sameeksha Jayaprakash will present her project to the panel of judges over Zoom. The award ceremony will take place on Feb. 25.

“The science fair is a really great opportunity to show all the things students are passionate about,” Jayaprakash said. “I know that I’m excited for my presentation, and I’m glad we’re able to do it this year.”

Jayaprakash researched antibiotics for her project. For her experiment, she tested different antibiotics on bacteria to see how they reacted, in hopes of researching an effective alternative to medicine that many people around the world don’t have access to.

“The main reason I chose this topic was because lots of people die due to the lack of accessibility to antibiotics,” Jayaprakash said. “I was trying to research different types of antibiotics that are more accessible to people around the world, and one of these was turmeric, which my family uses a lot in cooking.”

Participants in the upcoming fair had to compete in their individual school’s fair first. Winners at the regional level have the opportunity to advance to state-wide and national competition, and Jayaprakash is hopeful her efforts will pay off. 

“We had feedback on how to improve our projects at the school fair, and that was really helpful,” Jayaprakash said. “I do feel like I’m prepared for my presentation, and I think the topic I chose was really important.”

Despite the challenges of this year, she, and the many other students from all over Austin participating in the fair, continue to push forward for science. The fair, like all other recent events, has undergone necessary changes to stay open for these students.

“Usually, I’d get to present a trifold in person, but because of COVID, it’s over Zoom this year,” Jayaprakash said. “It doesn’t really make me any more or less nervous, though- I’m nervous, but hopeful. I put a lot of work in, and I’m excited for it to pay off.”

Her interest in the science fair nods to her bright future, and for Jayaprakash, this project could be the first in a long line of medical successes.

“I’m definitely interested in the medical field,” Jayaprakash said. “It’s something I’m really passionate about, especially with this project, and maybe someday being able to help people who don’t have access to antibiotics.”