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UTA to host premier regional science and engineering fair for DFW’s top young science students

Nearly 500 area middle and high school students are set to compete at The University of Texas at Arlington in the oldest and largest science and engineering fair in Texas.

The 65th Fort Worth Regional Science and Engineering Fair will be held Feb. 21-22 at College Park Center, 600 S. Center St. Students in sixth through 12th grades representing public, private, home schools or parochial schools in 10 counties will demonstrate their experiments and display their exhibits for a chance to win cash awards and the opportunity to advance to the national competitions.

The public is invited to view the projects between 3 and 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 22. This year’s fair comes as the UTA College of Science celebrates its 50th anniversary.  

“We are honored to host the annual fair and to help stimulate young minds already showing promise and dedication to science, technology, engineering and math,” said Morteza Khaledi, dean of the UTA College of Science. “Through events like this, we connect with our future and support STEM study and research in the best ways possible.”

COMPETITION CATEGORIES

  • Animal science
  • Behavioral and social sciences
  • Biochemistry
  • Chemistry
  • Computer science
  • Earth and planetary science
  • Electrical and mechanical engineering
  • Energy and transportation
  • Environmental science
  • Materials and bioengineering
  • Mathematical sciences
  • Medicine and health sciences
  • Microbiology
  • Physics and astronomy
  • Plant sciences

Khaledi said the Fort Worth Regional Science and Engineering Fair also opens new pathways for middle- and high school students to UTA degrees in critical fields. Such collaboration is expected of the model 21st century urban research university, as outlined in our Strategic Plan 2020: Bold Solutions | Global Impact, he said.

As an affiliated event, the Fort Worth Regional Science and Engineering Fair may select up to six high school projects for participation in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair scheduled May 8-13 in Phoenix. About 45 projects will advance to the Texas Science and Engineering Fair scheduled March 31-April 2 in San Antionio.

Middle school winners at this year’s fair may be selected to compete in the Broadcom MASTERS, a national competition created by the Broadcom Foundation and the Society for Science and the Public.

In addition to the competition, high school students will have an opportunity to tour some of the Shimadzu Institute for Research Technologies facilities at UTA, including the Nanofab Lab. Some students will tour the Planetarium at UTA. Participants also will get to participate in various activities jointly sponsored by the Colleges of Science, the College of Engineering, and the Office of University Recruitment. Major fair sponsors are the UTA Office of the Provost, the Miles Foundation, RadioShack and Lockheed Martin.

“As an industry leader in global security and information technology, Lockheed Martin is excited to once again support an event that has impacted the lives of students who will one day address some of our nation’s most critical issues,” said Duane Cuttrell, Director of Operations for Engineering at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics in Fort Worth.

“The Fort Worth Regional Science and Engineering Fair offers these young scientists and engineers a unique opportunity to present their commendable talent through innovative projects. This event clearly supports the STEM community of our region and speaks to the many talented students and teachers involved.”

The Miles Foundation, a new sponsor this year, plans to create a unique research opportunity for the competition’s high school winners that will enable them to attend UTA for a summer research internship to improve their project. The Foundation also is providing funding for students to dine at the Connection Café, located at the E. H. Hereford University Center.

Other event sponsors include Advantage Label, American Industrial Hygiene Association, American Society for Quality, American Water Works Association, CFJ Manufacturing, Delbert E. Lawry Award, Fort Worth Psychological Association, IEEE Fort Worth Section, Devon Energy, Northrop Grumman, the Society of Allied Weight Engineers, Society of Flight Test Engineers, Society of Texas Environmental Professionals, Tarrant County College, the Water Environment Association of Texas and Intel.

Last year’s regional fair drew more than 500 middle and high school projects. Among the previous participants is Afeefah Khazi-Syed, 16, who has been attending the FWRSEF since 6th grade. Now a junior at Fort Worth’s Harmony School of Innovation, Khazi-Syed took top honors last year in the microbiology division of the fair. She said competing in the event has become a tradition and inspired her to pursue a career in science.

“Over the years, FWRSEF organizers and directors at UTA have become like family,” Khazi-Syed said. “I started out with very small projects and experiments such as the effect of covering your mouth when sneezing. The feedback and suggestions that I’ve received have taken my research to a whole new level, and this past year, I conducted a comprehensive research study on the effect of nanoparticles in improving antibiotic drug delivery.”

Khazi-Syed will graduate in May 2017 and is considering majoring in bioengineering at UTA. 

For more information about the Fort Worth Regional Science and Engineering Fair, visit www.fwrsef.org.

About The University of Texas at Arlington

The University of Texas at Arlington is a Carnegie “highest research activity” institution of more than 50,000 students in campus-based and online degree programs and is the second-largest institution in The University of Texas System. The Chronicle of Higher Education ranked UTA as one of the 20 fastest-growing public research universities in the nation in 2014. U.S. News & World Report ranks UTA fifth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. The University is a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is ranked as the top four-year college in Texas for veterans on Military Times’ 2016 Best for Vets list. Visit www.uta.edu to learn more, and find UTA rankings and recognition at www.uta.edu/uta/about/rankings.php.

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The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.