Shulamith’s Basya Vishnepolsky claims first place

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Shulamith High School ninth-grader Basya Vishnepolsky won first prize in the national Science, Technology, Engineering and Math trivia competition at the Center for Initiatives in Jewish Education Innovation Day Conference, held at the New York Hilton Hotel on May 6. More than 2,000 students from more than 50 Jewish schools took part in the competition.

Vishnepolsky’s project was the “EZ DRY” dish rack, designed to accelerate the drying process for dishes.

Noam Maman, Gabriella Grossman, Chaya Warren and Sarah Antonelli also took part. Under the leadership of Tamar Herskowitz, the Shulamith students presented innovative solutions to everyday problems that they had spent months designing, engineering, and producing. The other two projects were the crib they named “The Nelly,” which is a must-have for all moms and an Eco-Friendly Crusher, which crushes plastic bottles and aluminum cans for recycling purposes.

The students also prepared tri-fold posters to explain the human needs they identified that the inventions address, the methods they used to generate the idea for their product, the experimentation they undertook to develop and refine it, and the features of their solution that make it not only desirable, but also technologically feasible and economically viable.

Taking part in the conference also allowed the student to network with their peers and broaden their engineering knowledge. The students also used their marketing skills to share with the judges the stories behind their projects in the form of inspirational business plans.