By Lexi Kupor
Advanced Science Research (ASR) is not your ordinary elective class. The class provides research opportunities that most teenagers aren’t lucky enough to experience until college or beyond, and ASR students not only pursue unique and relevant scientific experiments throughout the year, but also develop impressive technical and professional skills. The class culminates in the annual Synopsys Science Fair, at which participants showcase the results and implications of the year’s work. Get a sneak peek at this year’s talented ASR students and projects!
“This year, I’m doing a project where I’m testing the effects of microplastics on the gut microbiome because there’s a lot of microplastics in the environment from larger plastics being broken down”.
“We end up ingesting a lot of them because they’re in our tap water and even salt in the foods we eat from the ocean. Last year, I took this class and I really liked it. I learned a lot about [skills] from time management to how to set up an experiment. I’m really passionate about science, so I wanted to do it again and explore another topic.”
“My project is about biofuel, specifically with algae and fungi”.
“I decided on it because I was initially interested in mechanical engineering, but [that’s] not super realistic. But biofuels [are] related to mechanical engineering, and it’s related to what I’m interested in: automotive [engineering]”.
“The best part about science is experiments…, and this class is literally making up your own lab and your experiment. That’s why I chose it; I just want to do what I want”.
“The goal of my project is to determine if Type 2 Diabetes is caused by a high fat diet, specifically if the fat changes the composition and populations of the different bacteria in the gut and then the altered [bacteria] populations then cause diabetes”.
“I decided to take ASR because I am interested in studying a STEM field in college, so I thought it would be really helpful and fun to get some experience doing research. So far, I have learned how to manage my time and plan out projects, as well as how to use lots of different equipment.”