by Ciara Spencer
If you went to the Merritt Square Mall the weekend of February 7, you most likely saw the project boards filling the building. Of the almost three hundred projects entered into the fair, fifteen of them came from Viera. The most notable competing school was West Shore, who contributed over eighty projects.
The highest prize available in the International Science and Engineering fair (ISEF) is best of show. The winners receive an automatic bid to the national competition in Los Angeles, California. Both the senior category winners came from Viera High. One winner was Zak Loeb, a senior, whose project was in its fourth year and whose purpose was to treat the Madaca fish from chemicals in water. Freshman Alex Gabrielski was the other winner. Her project was in its third year, and was using algae as a greener source of fuel. Twin brothers John and Luke Evans, both seniors in Viera High School, won runner-up for best of show, and after competing for the last remaining spot, also won a bid to the international competition.
Viera High School also had six first place wins, with West Shore getting the other seven. Viera’s first place winners were: Senior Zak Loeb, Freshman Alex Gabrielzki, Freshman Indira Adevari, Seniors John and Luke Evans, Sophomore Alek Roth, and a team of Seniors Jake Rehers and Wyatt Howard. All first place winners get a bid to the state level of competition.
Viera also has students who took other places. Freshman August Debickes took second place in the behavioral category, and Freshman Ciara Spencer placed second in mathematics. Neither got a bid to the state level of competition.
All of the students who represented Viera at the science fair did an incredible job, and will continue to show Hawk Pride at state and national levels of the competition.