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Region’s top high school chemistry students earn a...

Region’s top high school chemistry students earn awards at MTSU tournament

Central Magnet School senior Logan Kelley, left, was presented a $500 cash prize by Greg Van Patten, College of Basic and Applied Sciences interim dean, for taking first-place honors in the annual Chemistry Scholarship Tournament held recently in the Science Building. Kelley also received a $2,000 scholarship. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

Nearly 30 exceptional high school chemistry students from across the region participated in the recent MTSU Department of Chemistry Scholarship Tournament.

Held in the Science Building, the competition recognized 29 outstanding chemistry students from 11 schools in Rutherford and surrounding counties. While on campus, they received an up-close look at the facilities as they consider MTSU as their college choice.

Virginia “Ginny” Benefield, right, an MTSU graduate student, leads a guided tour of prospective students attending the recent Chemistry Scholarship Tournament in the Science Building. Nearly 30 high school students from across the region took the 90-minute exam, saw the science facilities and had lunch at the event. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

Virginia “Ginny” Benefield, right, an MTSU graduate student, leads a guided tour of prospective students attending the recent Chemistry Scholarship Tournament in the Science Building. Nearly 30 high school students from across the region took the 90-minute exam, saw the science facilities and had lunch at the event. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

Participants included seniors who had completed a year of chemistry and qualified juniors.

Students came from Central Magnet, Siegel, Rockvale and La Vergne high schools in Rutherford County; Warren County High in McMinnville, Tennessee; Middle College High School (Franklin), Centennial, Independence, Brentwood and Page high schools in Williamson County; and Columbia Central High School.

“The tournament went well,” said Mengliang “Mike” Zhang, assistant professor and 2021 tournament director. “After the exam, the students enjoyed presentations from the interim chemistry chair (Andrienne Friedli), program advising office (Eric Miller), Admissions Office staff and four MTSU students.”

Central Magnet School senior Logan Kelley, left, was presented a $500 cash prize by Greg Van Patten, College of Basic and Applied Sciences interim dean, for taking first-place honors in the annual Chemistry Scholarship Tournament held recently in the Science Building. Kelley also received a $2,000 scholarship. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

Central Magnet School senior Logan Kelley, left, was presented a $500 cash prize by Greg Van Patten, College of Basic and Applied Sciences interim dean, for taking first-place honors in the annual Chemistry Scholarship Tournament held recently in the Science Building. Kelley also received a $2,000 scholarship. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

The participants toured the 250,000-square-foot Science Building and then had lunch with Drs. Friedli and Greg Van Patten (former chemistry chair now interim dean for the College of Basic and Applied Sciences.) Van Patten shared remarks and presented the students with their awards at the Nov. 6 event

Incentives included special awards (scholarships to attend MTSU and cash) to the top three senior finishers — all from Central Magnet — and top junior from the approximately 90-minute exam based on general chemistry that a high school student would have covered.

Central’s Logan Kelley, Hope Clark and Emma Tellez placed first, second and third in the tournament. Kelly received a $2,000 scholarship and $500 cash award. Clark earned a $1,500 scholarship and $300 cash prize, with Tellez receiving a $1,000 scholarship and $100 in cash.

MTSU College of Basic and Applied Sciences interim dean Greg Van Patten, right, presents Hope Clark with a $300 cash prize for finishing second in November in the 2021 Chemistry Scholarship Tournament in the Science Building. She also received a $1,500 scholarship. Clark is a senior at Central Magnet School in Murfreesboro. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

MTSU College of Basic and Applied Sciences interim dean Greg Van Patten, right, presents Hope Clark with a $300 cash prize for finishing second in November in the 2021 Chemistry Scholarship Tournament in the Science Building. She also received a $1,500 scholarship. Clark is a senior at Central Magnet School in Murfreesboro. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

Nathaniel Martinez of Independence High in Thompson’s Station, Tennessee, finished as the top junior. He was awarded $100.

Current MTSU students Jared Frazier, Virginia “Ginny” Benefield, Sophia Taylor and Miquellie Bonner led tours.

Chemistry is one of 11 College of Basic and Applied Sciences departments.

— Randy Weiler (Randy.Weiler@mtsu.edu)

Central Magnet School senior Emma Tellez, left, recently received a $100 cash prize from College of Basic and Applied Sciences interim dean Greg Van Patten for placing third in the recent Chemistry Scholarship Tournament in the Science Building. Tellez also received a $1,000 scholarship. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

Central Magnet School senior Emma Tellez, left, recently received a $100 cash prize from College of Basic and Applied Sciences interim dean Greg Van Patten for placing third in the recent Chemistry Scholarship Tournament in the Science Building. Tellez also received a $1,000 scholarship. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

MTSU Department of Chemistry Chair Greg Van Patten, right, awarded Nathaniel Martinez a $100 cash prize for being the top junior winner in the 2021 Chemistry Scholarship Tournament, held in the Science Building on campus. Lozano is a student at Independence High School in Thompson’s Station, Tenn. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)

MTSU Department of Chemistry Chair Greg Van Patten, right, awarded Nathaniel Martinez a $100 cash prize for being the top junior winner in the 2021 Chemistry Scholarship Tournament, held in the Science Building on campus. Lozano is a student at Independence High School in Thompson’s Station, Tenn. (MTSU photo by Cat Curtis Murphy)


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