StudentSuccessStories4 25rezNueva encourages students to explore their passions inside and outside the classroom, and each month for the remainder of the year we will share and celebrate a collection of these achievements.



STEM Fair Honors for Middle and Upper School Students

10 STEM SMCSTEMNueva students have earned very exciting awards pursuing their passions in various STEM fields during this past year!

As a result of their first-place awards at the San Mateo STEM Fair in March, seventh graders Sophia E. and Alexa W., and eighth grader Jack A., presented their work at the California State Science Fair at the California Science Center in Exposition Park, Los Angeles, on April 23–24, and all three brought home medals in the grades 6–8 junior division:

Sophia E. (7th grade): Fourth Place Medal in Mammalian Biology
Alexa W. (7th grade): Second Place Medal in Mathematical Sciences
Jack A. (8th grade): Third Place Medal in Mathematical Sciences

With these impressive finishes, all three were nominated to compete in this year's prestigious Broadcom MASTERS for the top 10% of all science projects in the country. Broadcom MASTERS (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) is the premier national science and engineering competition for middle school students. It will be held in the fall of 2018.

It was a very successful month, as Nueva students Sophia and Jack were also awarded first-place prizes at the Golden Gate STEM Fair, a regional fair in San Francisco held on Thursday, March 22. Sophia’s project, "The Influence of Sound Waves on the Brain," was in the Behavioral and Social Sciences category, while Jack's, "Predicting the Future: Using Machine Learning to Forecast the Progression of Alzheimer's Disease," was in the Math and Computer Science category. Jack was also awarded the Grand Prize at this event for best project in Physical Science, Math, and Computer Science in the junior division, grades 7–9.

Many other Nueva middle and upper school students were recognized for their work at the San Mateo STEM Fair. These students' investigative work, persistence, and dedication to seeking answers to their essential questions were impressive. Congratulations to all!

Sixth Grade

"Does a Combination of Presoaking or Scarification Benefit Bean Seed Germination or Growth?" By Lauren S.—Second Place

Seventh Grade

"Building Better Batteries," by David F.––Third Place

"Fooling the Buiret Test," by Akshay S.

"Brute Force vs. Fermat: Which Primality Test is Prime?" by Alexa W.––First Place

Eighth Grade

"The Impact of Ultraviolet Light Exposure on Bacteria," by Anya P.––Third Place

"Cleaning Water the Natural Way Using PGA; Chitosan and Moringa Seeds," by Alanna Y.––Honorable Mention

Ninth Grade

"Scrap Metal Rechargable Battery," by Sean C.—Third Place

Eleventh Grade

"Codon optimization of gene editing Cas9 nuclease to increase expression levels in human HepG2 liver cells for in vivo therapeutic application of CRISPR-Cas9," by Ben C. and Madeline M.—First Place



Upper School Students Win First Prize at NorCal Regionals

Eight upper school students earned the highest honor in their first-ever H2AC regional competition in Richmond. H2AC is the Horizon Hydrogen Automotive Challenge, a competition that provides hydrogen fuel cell and automotive design experience to high school students.

“Our students had a lot of fun and did a phenomenal job,” said Nueva Design Thinking and Fabrication Coach Rob Zomber, who is the club moderator. “This was brand new for all of us, but the team came together, and by the end you could see their confidence as they adjusted designs to deal with problems that arose.”

At the competition, students raced remote control cars powered by hydrogen fuel cells, focusing on maximizing efficiency. The students designed and built more than half the car, and went deep into research to find the most creative ways to gain a competitive edge.

You can learn more about the competition at Hydrogen Horizons.

Congratulations to Vanessa C., Shiley E., Piper H., Maya L., Kyle M., Nikhil S., Morgan T., and Ben Y!




Nueva Students Share Their Design Thinking Skills during Cross-Cultural Exchange at Stanford

10 STEM Nueva skylabo 2018.3 funDuring the last week of March, seven Nueva middle and upper school students joined three other students from Bay Area high schools to participate in SKY Labo’s educational program for 20 students from Keio University Affiliated Secondary Schools from Tokyo, Japan. These students provided constructive comments in response to the visiting students' design challenge, assisted with the development of their AI prototype presentations, and attended lectures by Stanford faculty. At week's end, Keio students and faculty enjoyed observing classes at Nueva’s Upper School.

SKY Labo, an education nonprofit, implements STEM+Arts curriculum developed in collaboration with the Stanford Graduate School of Education. SKY Labo's main objective is to promote collaborative learning to ignite students’ curiosity and interests in STEAM fields cultivating their love for learning on the road to becoming creative, confident problem solvers. The secondary goal is to foster a sense of intercultural and cross-cultural understanding among all students. 

Congratulations to the Nueva students who dedicated their time and experience: twelfth grader Lila M., tenth graders Ben L., Maya M., and Noah T., eighth grader Emily L., and seventh graders Maya T. and Lucie L.

Rie Kijima, co-founder of SKY Labo and lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Education, was grateful to Nueva students for sharing their knowledge of design thinking so generously. “Nueva students made a lasting impact on the Keio students’ lives,” she said.



By Dianne Willoughby, Editorial Manager

May 2, 2018



6565 Skyline Blvd.
Hillsborough, CA 94010





131 E. 28th Ave.
San Mateo, CA 94403



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