(TNS) -- Increasing their dominance of the prestigious Intel Science Talent Search, nine Bay Area students — six from the South Bay — were among the 40 national finalists named Wednesday.
The program, sometimes called the Junior Nobel Prizes, recognizes the nations’ most promising high school innovators, who are creating technologies and solutions to improve people’s lives.
Last year, eight Bay Area students were named finalists; in 2013, there were five.
California claimed the most finalists — 11 — of any state, surpassing eight from New York, which once eclipsed other states.
This year’s finalists include South Bay seniors Tanay Tandon of Cupertino High; Kriti Lall of Castilleja School in Palo Alto; Somya Khare of Lynbrook High in San Jose; and Andrew Jin, Rohith Kuditipudi and Steven Wang, all of The Harker School in San Jose.
East Bay finalists were seniors Jihyeon (Janel) Lee of Amador Valley High in Pleasanton, and Augustine Chemparathy and Saranesh Prembabu, both of Dougherty Valley High in San Ramon.
Each of the finalists, selected from among 1,800 entrants, will win at least $7,500 and an expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C. There they will compete from March 5 to 11 for the contest’s top prizes: three $35,000 third-place prizes, three $75,000 second-place awards and three top $150,000 awards.
Earlier this month, it appeared that the Bay Area was set up for a good showing in the Intel contest. From the Harker School alone, 15 semifinalists were named, the most from any school in the nation.
The contestants’ research projects range from a low-cost, portable device to detect blood diseases to an advanced encryption system with applications in cybersecurity.
©2015 the San Jose Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.)