Alby Joseph, a senior at W.T. Clarke High School, has been recognized as a scholar in the 2017 Regeneron Science Talent Search. This program is considered to be the nation’s oldest and most prestigious pre-college science competition for high school students.
According to its website, the Regeneron STS is a program of the Society for Science and the Public that recognizes and empowers the most promising young scientists in the U.S. who are creating the ideas and solutions to solve the most urgent challenges.
“It’s an incredible feeling to be named a Regeneron Scholar,” said Joseph. “When I found out, my heart was racing a million miles a minute because not only did they appreciate my work, but they also thought I have what it takes to be a real scientist.”
During the summer of 2016, Joseph interned in a laboratory at Stony Brook University where he worked under the mentorship of professor Iwao Ojima to study a new way of treating pain by attacking a specific protein. After learning about the Regeneron competition through the internship, and receiving hearty support from Ojima and Clarke research teacher Erika Rotolo, Joseph submitted his project, “Optimized Fatty Acid Binding Protein Inhibitors Investigating the Viability of a Novel Pain Relief Mechanism.”
In addition to this submission, Joseph was required to answer several essay questions, provide his transcript and submit instructors’ recommendations.
Each of the 300 scholars received a $2,000 award from Regeneron with a matching donation to his or her school. A total of $1.2 million in scholar awards are granted to inspire more young people to engage in science. Forty of the scholars will be announced as finalists on Jan. 24, an opportunity where they will be invited to Washington, D.C. in March to participate in final judging, have their work on public display, meet with notable scientists and compete for awards, including the top prize of $250,000.
Aside from his love of science, Joseph has another passion — music. Playing the cello since he was a fourth-grader at Bowling Green Elementary School, he gained confidence by being creative and using music as an outlet to unwind from the everyday pressures of schoolwork and extracurricular activities. His outstanding musical talents have qualified him to perform in the All-State Festival at the New York State School Music Association’s 2016 Winter Conference, the upcoming National Association for Music Education’s 2017 Biennial Eastern Division Conference in April, the Nassau Music Educators Association All-County Festival and the Long Island String Festival Association’s Nassau Secondary Festival.
Additionally, he serves as co-president of the school’s Tri-M Music, Science and National honor societies. He is also a member of the Math Honor Society, the school newspaper, Mathletes, Science Olympiad and has performed for the last three years in the pit orchestra for the school’s plays.
Along with this exceptional achievement, Joseph is also the Clarke High School Class of 2017 valedictorian, a semifinalist in the 2016 National Merit Scholarship Program and a semifinalist in the 2016 Siemens Competition in Math, Science and Technology.
“Alby is the only student in my years at Clarke High School to receive semifinalist standing in both the Regeneron Science Talent Search and the Siemens Competition,” said Principal Timothy Voels. “He is a humble young man who is a superb Clarke student.”
The support Joseph has received from his family, friends, teachers and peers has made him grateful for his time at the high school. “I’m really appreciative of the environment at Clarke because it has helped me and encouraged me to keep going and do what I love,” he said. “Here, it’s more about supporting one another and trying to get everyone ahead,” Joseph said.
While Joseph enjoys his last semester at Clarke, he will be competing in the Long Island Science and Engineering Fair in February and participating in the NAfME All-Eastern Conference in April, while looking forward to prom and graduation in late June. His postsecondary plans include attending college to study chemical engineering.
The East Meadow School District congratulates Alby for achieving this honorable distinction and wishes him tremendous success as he finishes his senior year and pursues his interests in college.