Student from the Ingenuity Project featured on WBAL TV 11

kathyle Poly senior semifinalist in national science competition

Kathy Le advances in Intel Science Talent Search
January 13, 2016
By Jennifer Franciotti

A high school senior in Baltimore is gaining national recognition for her research on genetic mutation.

Her work has led her to be a semifinalist in the 2016 Intel Science Talent Search, a national science competition.

Baltimore Polytechnic Institute senior Kathy Le said it is an exciting opportunity to advance this far for her research on the implications of stem cell interactions in genetic disorders.

“I think it’s a really great honor,” Le said.

For months Le worked with Johns Hopkins School of Public Medicine mentors Leah Greenspan and Erika Matunis in the lab on the research project. It is part of Poly’s Ingenuity Program, which provides hands-on experience to advanced math and science students.

“We love to have young people get into the program at a young age because it just gives them a lot of possibilities for their future,” said Matunis, a professor of cell biology at Johns Hopkins.

Greenspan, a graduate student at Johns Hopkins, agrees.

“Just the quality of her work, the time commitment,” Greenspan said of Le. “She definitely put in way more hours than she needed too, and it obviously shows.”

Out of 3 million seniors across the country, 300 made it to the semifinals, including 15 students from Maryland.

“It’s extremely competitive,” said David Nelson, the research coordinator at Poly. “Students have to work very hard to complete a project that earns this type of recognition.”

Those who advance to the finals will be competing for more than $1 million in prizes. Le said she hopes to reach the finals which will help her on her ultimate goal of attending Johns Hopkins in the fall.

Kathy Le, a senior at Poly, is a semifinalist in the 2016 Intel Science Talent Search, a national science competition.

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