District Five students shine in USC Region II Science & Engineering Fair

Dozens of students from Lexington-Richland School District Five showcased their talent and dedication at this year’s University of South Carolina (USC) Regional Science & Engineering Fair held on March 19, bringing home numerous awards.

Nickie Powell, the School District Five Coordinator of Science and Health, expressed her pride in the students’ achievements, stating, “I am so impressed with the high level of participation and the accomplishments of students in our district at this year’s Region II Science Fair. Their dedication and performance is indicative of their future success in the realm of science and engineering. Their success and participation would not have been possible without the phenomenal instruction and support provided by their teachers. Congratulations, students, and thank you, teachers!”

The top winners at the SC Regional II Fair qualify to enter the International Science and Engineering Fair. Here is a list of the winners for both the Junior and Senior Divisions:

Junior Division:


  • Serenity Sherrod (Harbison West Elementary) – Flamin’ Hot Fabrics
  • Tsubaki Shimamura (Harbison West Elementary) – Plant Growth with Light
  • Mustafa Azhar (Dutch Fork Middle) – Effect of Wildfire Ash and Alcohol on Zebrafish Embryos
  • Ayaana Shaik (Chapin Middle) – What Gets Rid of Mold Faster? Turmeric vs Cinnamon
  • Hannah Beth Berley (Irmo Middle School) – Cookie Time II: A Mostly Gluten-free Saga
  • Aishani Banerjee, Cayden Mohr, and Zealand Swank (Chapin Middle) – Drink More Drinks: If You Want to Lose Your Teeth
  • Paige Brunson, Karis Perz, and Amelia Tuggy (Dutch Fork Elementary) – Far Side Flashlight


  • Matthew Wang (Harbison West Elementary) – The Bottle Race

Senior (Grades 9-12):


  • Shaina Dashiell (Chapin High) – Sugar Consumption Impact on Music Performance Anxiety in High School Students
  • Emma Parler (Chapin High) – Exploring the Effects of Sedentary Behavior
  • Preston Kunkle (Chapin High) – The Effect of Partisan Biased Information about the Electoral College on the Political Cognition and Understanding of High School Students
  • Jonathan Fu (Chapin High) – Identifying User Gaze Patterns through Interacting with an AI-driven Chatbot for Problem-Solving
  • Maya Turner (Chapin High) – Parallel Symptoms in Neurodivergent Adolescents
  • Aamina Azhar (Dutch Fork High) – Effect of Natural Compound (PGG) on Development and Regeneration of Dictyostelium
  • Caroline Rider (Chapin High) – Ocular Sun Damage Preventatives
  • Taehoon Noh (Dutch Fork High) – Methylene Blue as a Diethyl Ether Peroxide Indicator and Inhibitor
  • Ella Carson (Chapin High) – Analyzing Phytoremediation as an Oil Spill Contamination Response Within Coastal Wetlands
  • Jennifer Liu (Dutch Fork High) – A Study on the Primary Factors Influencing US Citizens’ Overall Health Using Machine Learning
  • Andy Yang (Dutch Fork High) – CRFNN: a Contextual Reasoning-Based Fuzzy Neural Network for the Uncertainty Output in Object Recognition


  • Allie Wetmore (Chapin High) – Cost-Efficient Nephelometric Turbidity Meter
  • Emily Mulalley (The Center & Spring Hill High) – Interactive Hands-Free Conference
  • Tristin Thomas (The Center & Chapin High) and Ekatarina Tripp (The Center & Spring Hill High) – Paws Up
  • De’Mas Limehouse (The Center & Irmo High) and Grayson Zammiello (The Center & Chapin High) – Crutch Up
  • Hunter Majka and Joah Schaefer – Tranquil Tails
  • Brynn Froeschner (The Center & Chapin High), Maciej Karwowski (The Center & Chapin High), and Jayden Williams-Marshall (The Center & Dutch Fork High) – Smart Dog Feeder
  • Declan Abston (The Center & Spring Hill High) and Luke Reeves (The Center & Dutch Fork High) – The Steam Team
  • Thomas Conyers (The Center & Irmo High) and Milan Polite (The Center & Spring Hill High) – Barrier Tech Innovations

These remarkable students exemplify the District Five’s commitment to excellence in education and innovation, paving the way for future success in the fields of science and engineering.