April 2015 Heard Around the Watercooler

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Irvington High School science research student Ethan Tardio won first place in the molecular biology poster session category at the 30th Annual Upstate New York Junior Science and Humanities Symposium at the University at Albany on March 12. This symposium represented 41 high schools across New York State. Ethan presented his research on “The Role of Macrophages in Metastatic Dissemination and Growth.” Congratulations to Ethan on this prestigious honor.

Sleepy Hollow High School science research instructors, Janet Longo-Abinanti and Michele Zielinski, spent countless hours preparing their students to compete at the March 7 Westchester Science and Engineering Fair (WSEF). 420 students from 33 schools in Westchester and Putnam counties participated in the event, with two of Sleepy Hollow’s students being named finalists and grand-prize winners in the competition. Junior Dominique Marchini, and senior Elizabeth Sobolik, will present their work at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) 2015 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania this May. Dominque, Elizabeth, and fellow senior, Austen Paris, were each awarded first place at WSEF along with a $100.00 prize.  Finalist Dobbs Ferry High School senior Evan Cain also earned first place (and will present at ISEF in May), and Irvington High School senior Ethan Tardio earned third place in the cell and molecular biology category. WESEF is the largest and most competitive science fair in the region. Students showcased their research efforts at Sleepy Hollow High School to a group of nearly 300 professional scientists that acted as judges.

Other Sleepy Hollow High School winners were: 2nd Place ($50.00): Elizabeth Silver – Cell Biology; Julia Komorowski – Behavior; Catherine Brennan – Earth Science.  4th Place ($25.00): Javiera Morales – Environment; Heather Brown – Biochemistry; Colin Atkinson – Computer Science; Clare Johnson – Animal Science; Daniel Moriarty – Behavior; Emily Thayer – Medicine and Health.


Special awards were also presented to the following Sleepy Hollow High School students at the Westchester Science and Engineering Fair on March 7: Colin Atkinson – Intel Excellence in Computer Science ($200.00); Catherine Brennan – Women’s Geoscientist Award; Bethany Christian – Mianus River Gorge Ecology Award ($25.00); Emily Comas – Cornell University Food Science Award ($50.00); Sara Friedman – Future of Medicine Award ($50.00); Katherine Kachnowski – Fisher Scientific Award ($25.00); Javiera Morales – Diversity Achievement Award ($50.00); Isabella Salerni – Samuel Klasburn Award ($50.00); Sonya Smith – Fisher Scientific Award ($25.00); Tom Sobolik – ASU Walton Sustainability Solutions Initiative ($50.00); David Friedman– ASU Walton Sustainability Solutions Initiative ($50.00); Griffin Gebler – Cornell University Food Science Award ($50.00); Cassidy Higgins – Phillips Award for Exceptional Research ($25.00); Viktoriya Molchanova – Phillips Award for Exceptional Research($25.00); Dominique Marchini – US Metric Association Award; Caroline Murphy – Fisher Scientific Award ($25.00); Elizabeth Silver – In-vitro Biology Award.  For more information about WSEF and a complete list of all 2015 Westchester award recipients, please visit:http://www.wesef.org

Congratulations to all of our region’s amazing participants along with their families and teachers!



The family medicine residency program at Phelps Memorial Hospital Center will graduate its first class of residents this June.  One of the members of the inaugural class, Anesh Badiwala, MD, has accepted a position with Phelps Medical Associates, the hospital’s primary and specialty care medical group. This achieves one of the program’s key goals: to cultivate the best and brightest family physician leaders who will train at Phelps and stay to serve the Phelps community. The new residency program in Family Medicine received national accreditation in 2011 and was designed to help meet the growing shortage of primary care physicians in the U.S. and in Westchester County.  The first such program to be established in New York State since 1995, the NYMC Phelps Family Medicine Residency Program is a collaboration between three major health institutions in Westchester County: New York Medical College, Phelps Memorial Hospital Center and Open Door Family Medical Centers. To learn more about the NYMC-Phelps Family Medicine Residency Program, please visit: www.nymcphelpsresidency.org.

Please send submissions about distinctions, honors, and awards given to local community members, students, and organizations to:  thiwatercooler@thehudsonindependent.com

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