Each year, the ASI students compete in the Synopsys Championship, a local science fair that takes place in March. This year, seniors Tanya Matthew, Samira Sriram and Geoffrey Glass qualified to compete in the California State Science Fair. Only a certain number of students are offered the spot to compete from Synopsys. The California State Science Fair is held at the California Science Center in Los Angeles and took place from April 23 to 24.
Even with their accomplishments, ASI advisor Darren Dressen believes that the goal of ASI is to develop their skills and gain experience rather than win a medal.
“I’d like to think the idea behind this class isn’t so much to make a splash right now but to create kids who will make a splash, who really understand what research is about,” Dressen said. “I think they’re really a step ahead of their peers.”
Regardless of what level of lab experience students enter ASI with, they learn techniques that give them an edge in college and their future career. Dressen has received calls from universities asking if his past ASI students really completed such complicated research in high school. The skills and experience they gain through ASI have allowed some students, as freshmen or sophomores in college, to attain competitive internships in graduate research labs typically reserved for juniors and seniors.
All ASI students will also present their projects at the ASI symposium in May. The symposium is a chance for the students to share their projects with their peers, family, friends and teachers without judges.