Mililani Minds Thriving At Science Fairs, Again

Wednesday - May 26, 2010
By MidWeek Staff
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Mililani’s inquisitive young scientists continue to make a name for themselves in state and international circles.

* Viola Mocz, the latest Mocz sibling to win big for scientific research, took first for junior research at Hawaii State Science and Engineering Fair for her project,“A Fossil Fish Model for Robotic Fish: Learning From Evolutionary Hydrodynamics To Design Better Underwater Vehicles.” The win earned the Mililani Middle School eighth-grader a spot at Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, the world’s largest pre-college science competition, held in mid May in San Jose. (Older sister Lucia won third place at the IISEF last year for the Trojans and is now a freshman at Harvard.)


* Mililani High School sophomore Kelsi Watanabe placed sixth overall at the state fair April 5-7 for her work on the conceptual design of an aerostat, or stationary aircraft. She also earned a trip to the international fair.

* Mililani High School science teacher Nel Venzon attended the San Jose fair after receiving the HSSEF Science Teacher of the Year award (and an all-expense paid trip to the California fair). He accompanied Watanabe, who is his student.

* Mililani Middle School teacher Kim Maunakea, Mocz’s teacher, also received a first-place teaching award in the junior research division from the State Science Fair Council.

HSSEF is an enrichment program which stimulates interest in science and encourages entry into a science-related career.

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