MADISON, N.J.—The best and brightest young scientists in the Garden State will demonstrate their academic prowess on August 2 at Drew University, where they will present their original research from the New Jersey Governor’s School in the Sciences (NJGSS). According to Adam Cassano, associate professor of chemistry and co-director of NJGSS, the students’ work—conducted in teams and guided by 13 faculty experts from Drew—covers topics ranging from the unknown impact of global warming on the Earth’s flora to the origins of volcanic materials used in ancient pottery.
“The purpose of having students do team projects is to acclimate them to problem-solving using advanced software and equipment, and to get them thinking about how they can contribute to their group’s broader research goals,” he says. “The students, who we consider to be the 85 best high school scientists in the state, are mentored by our own faculty experts whose content knowledge and teaching excellence is what helps them cross the finish line.”
Founded in 1984, NJGSS has served 30 groups of top science students in New Jersey, and has graduated winners of many prestigious awards, including the Nobel Prize and the MacArthur Genius Grant. The focus of the program is to give high school students an early college experience, preparing them to realize their full potential in both the classroom and laboratory. This year, NJGSS received more than 350 applications from students who were nominated by their high school, with 85 being offered admission. Funded by generous private gifts from individuals and organizations, the cost of attendance is free. Major donors in 2013 included AT&T Foundation, Bayer HealthCare, Bristol-Myers Squibb, GlaxoSmithKline, Google, Johnson & Johnson, Novartis, Roche, Watson Pharmaceuticals and Wellington Management. Generous gifts were also received from John and Laura Overdeck, The Crimmins Family Charitable Foundation, Ina Zucchi Family Trust, the Busan Institute, and NJGSS alumni and faculty.
This year’s class of students will present their research in room 4 of Drew’s Hall of Sciences on August 2 beginning at 9:30 a.m. Eight teams will make 20-minute presentations. Members of the media are invited to attend and may make arrangements to do so by contacting David Muha, chief communications officer for Drew.