News of the achievements of local students and members of the Armed Forces:
* Mamie Henshaw of Vienna earned a bachelor of science degree in exercise and sport science during recent commencement exercises at Coastal Carolina University.
* John Bucy of McLean, Camille Calderon of McLean, Victoria Garcia of McLean, Nathaniel Martin of Great Falls and Meghan Reed of Vienna have been named to the dean’s list for the spring semester at Emerson College.
** Tessa Smalley of Vienna has been inducted into the Ohio Wesleyan University chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s oldest academic honor society.
* Jordan James of Vienna, a graduate of George C. Marshall High School, earned the Outstanding Collaboration Award, and Jonathan Canfield of Great Falls, a graduate of Langley High School, earned the David A. Titus Memorial Prize during a spring awards ceremony at Wesleyan University.
* Olivia Kloster of McLean has been named to the dean’s list for the spring semester at Bridgewater College.
** Hana Abouelenein, a sophomore at Langley High School, has been selected as the 2019 recipient of the AAUW McLean area branch’s STEM Excellence Award, presented to a female student or team from a high school in the McLean area with an outstanding project in the field of Engineering presented at the Fairfax County Regional Science Fair.
Abouelenein received a certificate, a $100 award, and recognition at the branch’s 50th-anniversary dinner, held May 11 at the McLean Community Center.
Thes award recognized work done by Abouelenein on her project, “Creating a Neural Network that Differentiates Between Cancerous and Non-Cancerous Epithelial Cells.” She created a neural network, which is a set of algorithms designed to recognize patterns, that used data about a skin cell’s characteristics – including its width, height, circumference, and color – to predict if it was cancerous or not.
Abouelenein’s goal was to have an accuracy rate for predicting cancerous and non-cancerous cells of over 80 percent, and she was able to achieve 84-percent accuracy.
At the regional science fair held in March, Abouelenein received a third-place award for her project in the category of Robotics & Intelligent Machines, as well as a second place award in STEM from the American Association of Engineers of Indian Origin, in addition to receiving the AAUW STEM Excellence Award.
** Fairfax County Public Schools students won first-place awards in 24 categories, and the school division received the Lynn P. Barrier Outstanding School Division Award at the high-school level, at the Virginia Technology Student Association Technosphere 2019 competition, held in Hampton.
Students from 16 Fairfax schools competed in the event.
From the Sun Gazette coverage areas, teams from Kilmer and Luther Jackson middle schools and Thomas Jefferson High School for Science & Technolgy received first-place awards, as did Kirill Usubyan and Eric Li of Thomas Jefferson.
* Ethan Hsaio, an 11th-grader at BASIS Independent McLean, has won the 2019 Junior Study Abroad Scholarship and will travel to Spain this summer.
This national award, valued at more than $3,500, is given each year to 24 students nationally who become eligible by earning high scores on the National Spanish Examination, then then submitting samples of their written and oral work in Spanish to a selection committee.
In July, Hsaio will be traveling to Spain with the other 23 winners to study the Spanish language and culture at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in Spain.
“This is a very exciting opportunity for Ethan, and we’re so proud to see him acknowledged for his passion and determination,” said Sara Conyers, director of student affairs for grades 8 to 12 of BASIS Independent McLean.
BASIS Independent McLean has participated in the National Spanish Examination for three years. Hsaio is instructed by Spanish teachers Monica Isquith, Ashley Angelovich and Matthew Hunt.
* “Forever,” an animated film submitted by students at George C. Marshall High School, has been designated an Official Selection of the Virginia High School League Film Festival, which will be held June 1 at Piedmont Community College.
A total of 91 films from 40 schools were submitted for consideration in various categories in the competition.
* Khalila Karefa-Kargbo, the daughter of Karefa Kargbo and Emerica Karefa Kargbo of McLean, has been named to the president’s list, and Mark Longstaff, the son of Richard and Maureen Longstaff of Vienna, and Joseany Mbakassy, the daughter of Antonio and Eduarda Mbakassy of McLean, have been named to the dean’s list for the third quarter at Randolph-Macon Academy.
* Avatar Copper, the son of Richard Copper and Param Bajwa of McLean, was among students from Randolph-Macon Academy who spent spring break assisting at the Washington United Methodist Church Disaster Recovery Center in eastern North Carolina.
The students and chaperones worked to help repair the center as well as homes in nearby Belhaven, N.C., which had been devastated by Hurricane Florence last September.