Darien teen selected as Regeneron Top Scholar, book drive under way and more

Darien teen selected as Regeneron Top Scholar

Gouri Krishnan has been selected as a Regeneron Science Talent Search Top Scholar for her research work in King School’s Advanced Science Program for Independent Research and Engineering.

A senior at King School in Stamford, Krishnan was one of two students at the school selected for the scholarship, one of the most the prestigious competitions for high school students. This year, 1,949 students from 627 high schools across 48 states and five countries submitted research projects. The applicants were narrowed down to 300 Top Scholars from 194 high schools in 35 states.

With an interest in clean energy, Krishnan’s research focuses on the development of energy-saving electrochromic color-changing windows that will reduce energy use and waste. Her design, which she developed as an intern at Yale University, mitigates climate change by reducing carbon emissions buildings give off while maintaining indoor climate control.

“I could not be more proud of Gouri,” said Victoria Schulman, who serves as King’s Director of Science Research and oversees ASPIRE. “She is doing things I didn’t even attempt until I was in graduate school. Witnessing a student grow from a young teen with an interest in science to an innovative scientist who is producing work that is of the same caliber as professional researchers is my greatest joy. Indeed, Gouri’s research and written reports became so advanced that I couldn’t tell the difference between her work and her lab mentors’ work.”

According to Head of School Carol Maoz, Krishnan said that as soon as she learned she had been selected as a Top Scholar, she raced to find Schulman and celebrate.The recognition also reinforced Krishnan’s commitment to science, she said.

“Though my internship often required long days in the lab, this recognition feels like confirmation that my work can have a tangible impact on the field of environmental science and clean energy,” Krishnan said.

Krishnan and King School will each be awarded $2,000 for her accomplishment as a Top Scholar. 

Book drive under way

The Unite for Africa Club at Darien High School is holding its third annual book drive and is seeking the community's help to donate books in support of the group's effort on behalf of marginalized youth in Africa.

In the past two years, the group collected and shipped more than 7,000 books — 3,611 in 2022 and 3,550 in 2021 — through a partnership with the Books for Africa organization.

The mission of Unite for Africa is to increase awareness about the importance of education and its impact on empowering youth in Sub-Saharan Africa, growing marginalized children’s chances of survival and success, according to club members. Education is foundational in separating third world countries from first world countries.

Book drops are located at the Darien Library, Palmers, Starbucks, Roost, and UCBC, which will be set up until Feb. 5.

Club members said they will also be receiving book contributions from Darien High School, Middlesex Middle School, Wilton High School, Stark Elementary School and Hindley Elementary School and are hoping to get more schools involved.

The Books for Africa organization ships the books sent within days of receiving the donations. Transportation partners, including Frank Futie & his staff at The Rented Truck Driver, Penske Truck and GTI Travel donate their resources. Club members have earned money through bake sales with the help of Vavala's Deli in Darien to support the cost of shipping the books to Africa.

Darien students earn honors

Katherine Conrad of Darien was named to Pennsylvania Western University Dean's List for the 2022 fall semester, when she studied at PennWest's California, Pa., campus. More than 3,500 Pennsylvania Western University students earned placement on the Dean's List. Students named to the Dean's List must earn a minimum of 12 graded credits during the semester and earn a minimum semester GPA of 3.40.

Six students who attend Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pa., attained Dean's List in fall 2022. The status is granted to students who earned a scholastic average of 3.6 or better while carrying at least 12 hours of regularly graded courses. Named were Cate Droogan, Alex Oh, Kishan Pael, Olivia Pistone, Evan Smith and Meghan Wood.

Charlie Flynn of Darien has been named a Presidential Scholar for the fall 2022 semester at Clarkson University in Potsdam, N.Y. Presidential Scholars must achieve a minimum 3.80 grade-point average and carry at least 14 credit hours. Clarkson is a private, national research university that educates 4,300 students across 95 programs of study in engineering, business, the arts, education, sciences and health professionals.

 Kate McCarthy of Darien, pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Advertising, was named to Marquette University's Dean's List for the fall 2022 semester at the Milwaukee, Wisc., institution. To make the Dean's List, students must have earned at least 12 credits for the fall 2022 semester and have no disqualifying grades. The GPA threshold varies by college: 3.5 for the following colleges: the Diederich College of Communication, the College of Business Administration, the College of Health Sciences, the Opus College of Engineering and the College of Nursing. For the College of Education and the Klingler College of Arts and Sciences, undergraduate students must have at least a 3.7 to be named to the Dean's List. 

Eleven Darien students have been named to the Dean's List at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pa., for the fall 2022 semester. Students must earn a grade point average of 3.5 or higher on a scale of 4.0 to receive Dean's List recognition. Named were Emily Alexander, Kristen Benedict, Maddie Connors, Carlyn Florio, Lauren Grandon, Kevin Kuryla, Kendall Luecke, Connor Martin, Sophie Petti, Margaret Williams and Caroline Wygal,

Michela Cino of Darien was named to the fall 2022 Dean's List at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. To be named to the Dean's List at the private university, a student must have earned a grade point average of at least 3.5. Cino is majoring in community health.