Math League winners

The sixth grade math team at Freeport Middle School finished first in the Southern Maine Elementary Math League meet in Portland on March 10, when 23 greater Portland schools competed. Contributed

Falmouth student gains national recognition in art

Liz Mazelsky of Falmouth won a 2020 Scholastic Gold Key Award for her oil painting “Pears I” in this year’s Scholastic Art & Writing Competition.

In addition, her watercolor “Flowers and Lobsters” is on display through March 20 at Springville Art Museum as part of the annual Utah All-State High School Art Competition. Of 1,048 student entries it was one of 341 selected for display. Mazelsky attends high school in Utah.

More than 340,000 works were submitted for the Scholastic Art and Writing awards. “Pears I” won in the West Art region-at-large. Regional Gold Key winners are being judged for national awards, to be handed out June 3 at Carnegie Hall in New York.

A high school junior, Mazelsky advocates for young people with special needs through her “Celebrate Neurodiversity!” project, which was featured at the March 7 Autism Conference in South Portland.

NASA selects Falmouth school for research satellite project

Falmouth High School has been chosen as one of three local schools selected by NASA to carry auxiliary payloads into space between 2021-23.

The payload proposed by Falmouth students will study harmful algal blooms to see if they increase atmospheric temperature and water vapor levels in the atmosphere above them. Developing the capacity to monitor and identify algal blooms from orbit will provide a simple way to track the development, distribution and dispersion of blooms. If a correlation between humidity and the temperature of the atmosphere and the sea surface in the vicinity of HABs is established, it will be easier to detect when an algal bloom is growing.

The program is part of NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative that provides opportunities for nanosatellite science and technology payloads built by universities, schools and nonprofit organizations to ride share on space launches.

Maine’s CubeSat, MESAT1, is being developed in partnership between University of Maine’s graduate students in collaboration with the University of Southern Maine undergraduate students, who are providing CubeSat design, development, integration and testing.

Of the 11 payload proposals selected, Falmouth High School, Saco Middle School and Fryeburg Academy were chosen.

When MESAT1 is launched, Maine middle school and high school students will access satellite data for scientific discovery, according to project leaders.

Portland swimmer receives YMCA Citizen Award

Fiona Silva was given the Maine YMCA Swimming League Thomas “Tom” Manduca YMCA Citizen Award at the Maine YMCA State Championship meet last month. With her are Amy Silva, head coach Zachary Mullin and Angel Silva. Contributed

The Maine YMCA Swimming League awarded Fiona Silva the Thomas “Tom” Manduca YMCA Citizen Award at the Maine YMCA State Championship meet in Orono last month.

Silva has been swimming for the Greater Portland Swim Team at the YMCA of Southern Maine since the age of 12 and has been team captain for the last two years.

Silva has worked for the YMCA for the last two years and is directly responsible for teaching the next generation of Greater Portland Swim Team swimmers.

This award is named in memory and honor of Tom Manduca, head coach of the Auburn Lewiston YMCA Swim Team for more than 20 years. In Manduca’s spirit of giving back to the community, the YMCA Swim league donates $500 to the charity of the recipient’s choice.