Two HFHS seniors selected for science competition

Two Hudson Falls students have been selected to present the findings of their scientific research at a sub-regional competition.

Seniors Kierra McCarthy and Danielle Kitchner will join about 60 other local high school students at the Eastern Sub-Regional Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS) competition on February 3 at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School.

If selected as finalists, McCarthy and/or Kitchner will be invited to speak at the 33rd Annual Upstate New York JSHS in March.

McCarthy’s research topic is “The Gradient Effect of Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) and Perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) Using Mayflies (Ephemeroptera), Stoneflies (Plecoptera) and Caddisfly (Trichoptera) as Biological Monitors in the Hoosic River.” In 2016, she received a $5,000 grant from the Marjot Foundation, which she used to send water and tissue samples to the AXYS laboratory in Canada to test for PFOA levels.

Kitchner’s topic is “A Qualitative Sampling of Macroplastic and Microplastic in Select Shorelines of Lake George, NY.”

Two other seniors, Ryan Clouse and Kayla Denny, were selected to have posters detailing their research on display at the competition. Clouse’s topic is “The Correlation Between Reading Comprehension and Stress/Anxiety,” while Denny has been researching “The Effect of Environmental Size on the Navigational Competency of Physarum Polycephalum.”

The JSHS program is a tri-service – U.S. Army, Navy, and Air Force – sponsored STEM competition which promotes original research and experimentation in the sciences, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) at the high school level and publicly recognizes students for outstanding achievement. By connecting talented students, their teachers, and research professionals at affiliated symposia and by rewarding research excellence, JSHS aims to widen the pool of trained talent prepared to conduct research and development vital to our nation.