Senior selected in scientific talent search

in Features/News by

As the “nation’s oldest and most prestigious science and math competition,” the Regeneron Student Talent Search named senior Nicholas DiStefano as one of its 300 High School Scholars. Regeneron Student Talent Search, aimed at identifying and rewarding scientific and mathematical talent, selected its High School Scholars from an applicant pool of nearly 2000 students.

“I was surprised because I thought so many people had better projects,” DiStefano said. “The topics were really interesting but also really advanced and well-developed.”

For his project, DiStefano developed a hydrogel that increased cell proliferation in wound care while simultaneously decreasing chances of nosocomial infection.

“Basically, I created a new way to improve wound healing that is faster and cheaper than alternatives while also protecting against hospital-acquired infections,” DiStefano said.

DiStefano began his project in June 2017, spent the summer and first semester of his junior year working on it and finished in January 2018. In addition to winning Regeneron, he won numerous other accolades with this project, including sixth place at the 2018 Florida State Science Fair.

“Something finally clicked, and I felt like all of the work I’ve been doing for the last four years finally paid off,” DiStefano said. “I spent summers in the lab or at internships instead of going out and enjoying [summer]. I love research, and it was finally all worth it.”

As a Regeneron High School Scholar, DiStefano now awaits Jan. 23, when Regeneron will name 40 finalists who will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. to compete for over $1.8 million in awards. Finalists will also have a chance to present their projects to experts in the field and representatives of Congress.

“No matter what happens, I’m still really grateful,” DiStefano said. “This opportunity has definitely opened a lot of doors for things like college and internships, and I’m honored to have gotten this far.”

As Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Patriot Post and a third-year staffer, Amber lives and breathes journalism. Alongside her better half and Co-Editor Angela, she converted The Patriot Post into a news magazine and often refers to it as her child. She also serves as the National Honor Society President and English Honor Society Vice President and competes in science research and Model UN. In her (limited) free time, Amber volunteers in the ICU at Cleveland Clinic, bakes, reads, shops and eats brunch (her favorite meal).

1 Comment

  1. Dear Nicholas,
    As your grandfather and I stood here
    reading about your success in this
    Scientific Research Project, we are filled
    with such love and pride.
    We are well aware of the hours and hours
    you have spent on this project, but it
    makes us feel so good to hear you say
    just how much you enjoy doing research.
    We celebrate this accomplishment with
    you!! You are truly a remarkable young
    man!!
    And most of all, always remember that
    even though we are far apart, we think of
    you often and that our love is with you
    no matter where you are!❤️
    All Our Love, ALWAYS
    Grandmom & Grandpop D.
    CONGRATULATIONS 👏🏻❤️👍🏻🤗

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