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Siemens Westinghouse science competition New England finalists will compete at MIT this weekend

The New England regional finals of the Siemens Westinghouse Science & Technology Competition, a scholarship and awards program, will be held at MIT on Nov. 5 and 6. Projects will be exhibited in Killian Hall from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 5 and in the Stata Center, Room 123 on Saturday, Nov. 6 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Five high school students from New England and four teams of high school students from New England, New York, Puerto Rico and Texas selected from more than 1,000 entries will present their original research projects to a panel of judges during the two-day event. The winners will advance in the National Finals in Washington, D.C. in December, to compete for a top individual scholarship prize of $100,000. Members of the top team will share a $100,000 scholarship.

"Promoting science, mathematics and technological excellence throughout all of our educational systems is of critical importance to our society," said MIT President Charles M. Vest. "The Siemens Westinghouse Science & Technology Competition is an excellent means of accomplishing that. We are particularly pleased to host the competition's regional events at our campus, as Siemens Corporation has been a strong partner with us on many efforts to develop the enormous talent and creativity of the future scientists and engineers of the 21st century."

Individual New England students competing this weekend are residents of Acton and Andover, Mass.; Cumberland, Maine; and Westport, Conn. Their projects include an invention that may help diabetics measure blood sugar levels without puncturing the skin, a study on balancing the ozone layer, the discovery of two new stars in Cassiopeia, and a new motif in nanotechnology that might impact drug delivery.

Panels of leading scientists and university faculty serve as judges at the regional and national competitions; they are selected by the College Board, the independent administrators of each of the stages in the judging process. The lead MIT judge is Les Perelman, program director of Writing Across the Curriculum. Sheila Widnall, Institute professor in aeronautics and astronautics, is the keynote speaker at the Saturday evening awards dinner in Morss Hall.

The individual regional winner will receive an award of $3,000; members of the winning regional team will share a prize of $6,000. All regional runners-up will be awarded a $1,000 scholarship. The prize money will be applied toward the winning students' post-secondary education.

Established in 1998 to promote and support educational activities, the Siemens Foundation recognizes America's most promising science and mathematics students and teachers, as well as schools that are doing the most to promote education in the core sciences. Its mission is based on the culture of innovation, research and educational support that is a hallmark of Siemens' U.S. operating companies and its parent company, Siemens AG.

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