First-Timers Celebrate Win at Rotary Science Fair

(left to right) Lily Mick and Kiera Pauze-Reid were shocked to hear they won first place at the 32nd Annual Rotary Science Fair. The pair now get to compete at the Canada Wide Science Fair in Fredericton, New Brunswick in May. Photo by Megan Pounder/SaultOnline

Lily Mick and Kiera Pauze-Reid got a shocking surprise on Saturday afternoon when their names were called as the first place winners of the 32nd Annual Rotary Science Fair at the George Leach Centre.

“I felt like I was going to collapse,” said Pauze-Reid, talking about how she felt when she heard the announcement. “I did not believe this was ever going to happen.”

This is the first science fair the seventh grade students at Boreal French Immersion have participated in. The pair told reporters that their project, Under Pressure, was inspired by the pressures of going to school.

“It was really hard for us to think under pressure, and it was like our brain was stunted, so we wanted to get behind that and see if it’s just us, or everyone,” said Pauze-Reid.

They had 72 subjects of various ages – each sample size the same – memorize different objects and then asked them to recall what they’d seen – some under the pressure of being timed, some not.

Pauze-Reid said that the people who were not aware of the timer did 19.2 per cent better than the people who were aware of it.

Mick said this discovery proved their hypothesis was true – people under pressure perform more poorly than people who aren’t trying to beat the clock.

Judge-In-Chief Sharron Valli said that the pair met the most of the judging criteria – scientific thought, originality, creativity and communication  – that’s factored in when looking for award winners.

“We’re happy with what we’re sending to Fredericton, and we’re happy with the awards we have given out,” Valli said.

Mick and Pauze-Reid beat out 50 other exhibits and 74 other students, and now have the opportunity to compete in the Canada Wide Science Fair, taking place in Fredericton, New Brunswick in May. Second place winners Ellery Bowman and Leah Johnstone from Holy Cross Catholic Elementary School will also join them with their project, “A” is for Activities.

Below is the full list of award winners:

Best in engineering: Kaydee Brown (Superior Heights), Abigail Henry (Korah);

Best use of math: Liam Spacek (Ecole Notre-Dame-du-Sault);

Gary Rahn Natural History Award: Abbas Syed, Nathan Adams (Anna McCrea);

Gary Rahn Green Thinking Award: Stephen Tan (Korah);

Attilio Berdusco Health Science Award: Victoria Talvitie (Korah);

HealthGear Medical Health and Safety Award: Ava Engel (Korah);

Ted Rogers Innovation Award: Kaydee Brown (Superior Heights);

University of Ottawa Entrance Scholarship Award: Stephanie Katajamaki (Korah);

Algoma University Environmental Science Entrance Grant: Catherine Quon (Korah);

Algoma University General Entrance Grant: Cassandra Carlson (Korah);

Judges Award-Scientific Communication Award: Jeffrey Chen, Mackenzie Inglis (Boreal French Immersion);

Judges Award-Sports Science Award: Brady Deschene, Michael Starzomski (Superior Heights);

Judges Award For Individual Merit: Kayla Kletke, Alexis Olar (Tarentorus);

Third Place Junior: Lily Mick, Kiera Pauze-Reid (Boreal French Immersion);

Second Place Junior: Ella Haas (Korah);

First Place Junior: Ellery Bowman, Leah Johnstone (Holy Cross);

First Place Intermediate: Kendra Lacasse, Rachel Reed (Superior Heights);

Third Place Senior: Jenna Vecchio (Korah);

Second Place Senior: Cassandra Carlson (Korah);

First Place Senior: Tori Aikens (Korah);

Alfred R. Askin Shields:

Junior: Boreal French Immersion;

Intermediate: Superior Heights;

Senior: Korah;

Honorary Mention (Fifth Place Overall): Ella Haas (Korah);

Honoary Mention (Fourth Place Overall): Ellery Bowman, Leah Johnstone (Holy Cross);

Benjamin Cohen Family Memorial Trophy for Third Place Best of Fair: Tori Aikens (Korah);

Tenaris Award-Second Place Overall: Cassandra Carlson (Korah);

Rotary Club of Sault Ste. Marie Award of Excellence – First Place: Lily Mick, Kiera Pauze-Reid (Boreal French Immersion).