Falmouth Academy’s 34th Annual Science & Engineering Fair

Ben+Gulmann+23+standing+by+his+award+winning+project+titled+Assesssing+the+Distribution+of+Asian+Shore+Crabs+on+Woodneck+Beach.

Ben Gulmann ’23 standing by his award winning project titled “Assesssing the Distribution of Asian Shore Crabs on Woodneck Beach.”

Karly Shifrin, Staff Writer

In February at FA, one of the biggest and most well-known events happens: The Science & Engineering Fair. This year’s fair took place on February 17, 2022.  It included over 160 students, and was set up unlike any other science fair, at FA, before. 

Unlike last year’s fair, this year’s Science and Engineering Fair was in person. Still, the fair was not quite like years past as a result of two major changes. First, the upper and middle schools were divided: middle school in the morning and upper school in the afternoon. This was done to allow for social distancing. The second major difference was that the award ceremony was held on the Tuesday after the fair instead of on the same day as the fair.  

But deep down, Falmouth Academy’s Science and Engineering Fair still held the same significance and place in students’ and teachers’ hearts as it does every year. 

“The tradition of The Science and Engineering Fair is a really important part of FA as a whole. Not only is it like a right of passage for younger students it builds bonds between students of all ages,” Science Department Chair Mrs. Liz Klein said.

Although Science Fair is optional for seniors, school bonding could be seen this year as the seniors helped to set up the gym before the fair and even helped as judges to some middle school students.

Another special aspect of Falmouth Academy’s Science & Engineering Fair is the freedom that students have to research and experiment on a topic of their choice. Also,  students are able to get help with their projects through mentorships with people from top local institutions including WHOI (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) and MBL (Marine Biological Laboratory). 

“One thing that is really special to me about the science fair is the way that it allows students to take ownership of their work and create something they are proud of. I love how teachers are here to support and guide the students but the work, in the end, is the students,” said Mrs. Klein.

You can really see the diversity of passions and interests of FA students when looking at the many different topics chosen to study. This year alone there were projects ranging from “How Solar and Hydropower can Work Together to Create a Solar Battery,” by Dillon Fondren ’25, to “Measuring the Local Inflation Expectations,” by Luke Xiang ’23.

Because of COVID-19 health and safety concerns, the awards ceremony was held on Tuesday, February 22, 2022, during All School Meeting. The ceremony was recorded and the list of winners can be found on Falmouth Academy’s website. The first-place winners for the Upper School were Sofia Metri ’22, Emily Lazarus ’24, and Ben Gulmann ’23. The first-place winners for the middle school were Emma Bena ’26, Matthew Kellogg ’26 and Ray Zhang ’26. 

Falmouth Academy’s 34th annual Science and Engineering Fair was a huge success. Even though at times the fair can be stressful, both students and teachers agree that it’s all worth it for the incredibly special experience that is Falmouth Academy’s Science and Engineering Fair.