Symposium at the Little Theater held for the University Level Mentorship class

Thurston Rogers, Staff Writer

Families, peers and mentors of students in the University Level Mentorship class got to attend a symposium about their research projects 7-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 18, in the Little Theater at MHS West Campus. The event was also open to the public for anyone to attend. In the symposium students presented their research projects one at a time to a favorably sized group to present to.

At the event, the mentors from Kansas State were able to provide their insight on the students they mentored and their projects. 

“One of the great things of this presentation is that we get to formally thank our mentors at Kansas State in person,” Janet Hanson, University Level Mentorship teacher, said. “We called actually the ones who were able to come [here] up to the front of the Little Theater.”

Make no mistake, the students of the mentorship class are far from normal when it comes to their passion in their research and the Mentors made that clear when talking about the students they mentored. 

“They verify for us what we know and what we hope from the beginning,” Hanson said, “and that’s that the students we send to Kansas State to do this are really exceptional students.”

Hanson makes an effort to make sure that each of the students in the class do a good job at representing the rest of the people in the class.

Junior Anvesha Sharda is a member of the class whose research project, “Effects if Brf2 Activator Dimethyl Fumarate on CD8 and CD4 Effector Functions,” won the state Science fair last month in Wichita and moved on to the international competition in Dallas next month. She was pleased with the number of people who turned out to the Symposium to see the presentations. 

“[They] almost filled the entire Little Theater,” she said. “All the researchers were very happy to share their research with a larger crowd.”

Three of the students who won first in their category at the state science and engineering fair were given a cash prize of $100. That money came from a fund of a previous semi-finalist winner of the Regeneron Talent Search Competition in 2018, Launn Jung. She won $2,000 to go towards MHS and when asked what she wanted to do with that money she decided to give $100 for any student who won first place in any science fair category. 

“There’s just a little over $1,000 left in that account,” said Hanson, “We’re just going to give it away until it’s done.”