Academics Extracurricular Activities Students

Students Honored with 2018 STARS Awards for Excellence in Research

STARS graduates pose for a group photo.

This year, two Ladue Horton Watkins High School students, Rose Coughlin and Rajdeep Paul, were selected to receive a Partnership of Research Institutions Award for Excellence in Research from the 2018 STARS Program (Students and Teachers as Research Scientists), a six-week precollegiate research program held over the summer!

Over the course of six weeks, the students worked with local scientists from fields such as biology, chemistry, computer science, earth science, engineering, environmental science, mathematics, medicine, physics and psychology. The program offers high school students an opportunity to gain some undergraduate-level research experience.

About 82 students from area schools participated in the program, but only 27 produced work strong enough to receive the award. The awardees were selected after they presented their research papers to their peers, parents and research mentors at the conclusion of the program on July 20.

The two Ladue Schools students synthesized their work into research papers:

  • Rose Alise Coughlin: “Kinetic modelling of the removal of SOx and NOx in power plant emissions,” with the assistance of Dr. Grigoriy Yablonsky, Washington University.
  • Rajdeep Paul: “Investigating the relationship between loss-of-function mutations in CLE Genes FON2, FOS1-1, and FOS1-2 and meristem development in S. viridis,with the assistance of Dr. Elizabeth Kellogg, Donald Danforth Plant Science Center.

“Given the judges evaluation scores, this was one of the best classes ever,” said STARS Director Kenneth R. Mares, a member of the Department of Biology at the University of Missouri–St. Louis.

At this year’s confirmation ceremony, Chancellor Tom George extended each STARS graduate an offer of a scholarship covering tuition, up to $750 for books per semester, as well as undergraduate research opportunities in their intended major should they gain admission and choose to enroll at UMSL in the fall of 2019.

The students will receive their awards during ceremonies at their schools or school district boards of education meetings.