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For More Information Contact the Public Information Office:
    Jon Zlock       
    Kathryn Forsyth, Director
For Release:   March 27, 2007

Two Students Selected for 2007 National Youth Science Camp

Two outstanding seniors from Mercer and Monmouth counties have been selected as New Jersey's delegates for the 2007 National Youth Science Camp this summer in West Virginia.

Michael Sampson, a senior at Trenton Central High School will join Christina Lin, a senior at Middletown High School South, starting June 27 for this year's four-week camp on secondary science. The program, which originated in 1963, honors, rewards, and encourages excellence in science.

"We continue to stress the importance of both science and math in our curriculum, and Michael and Christina are prime examples of bright young minds who dedicate themselves to these important fields," said Commissioner of Education Lucille E. Davy. "I'm sure both of these talented young students will take full advantage of this incredible opportunity."

New Jersey's delegates were selected by a Department of Education review committee. All applicants had to submit a formal application certifying their senior status in high school and an essay expressing why each applicant wanted to be selected, along with a resume, high school transcript and two letters of recommendation.

According to organizers, the National Youth Science Camp "creates an environment where young scientists of diverse backgrounds and interests may reap maximum benefits from interaction with one another and with visiting scientists."

Such goals are precisely why both Michael and Christina applied to the program.

"Science and math are what interest me the most," Michael wrote in his application letter. "I am prepared to take in any knowledge that is given to me, but I am also prepared to ask a lot of questions, too. To me, that's what science is all about."

"While I enjoy all my classes in high school, math and science remain my primary focus," Christina wrote in her application. "I cannot wait to meet others who may share my diverse loves of poetry, Van Gogh, alternative music, molecular orbital theory, and nanobiotechnology."

Christina Lin's resume is as expansive as her interest in science. The same can be said for Michael Sampson.

Christina has attended the New Jersey Governor's School in the Sciences at Drew University and the Columbia University Science Honors Program and is a member of the Math Team, Science Team, Student Council, school literary magazine, National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, and the League of Women Voters.

She is ranked number one in her class of 343 and received a five, the highest score possible, on the following Advanced Placement (AP) exams: Biology, Psychology, Calculus and U.S. History.

"In order to take AP Calculus, students must take two match classes during their sophomore year," wrote math teacher Dona Coffey in Christina's recommendation letter. "Christina took Comprehensive Geometry Honors and Pre-Calculus Honors and had a high A+ average. This is not an easy accomplishment."

Michael Sampson is a member of the following activities: varsity soccer, varsity tennis, the Blood Drive Committee, National Honors Society, Student Government, and the Princeton Model Congress. He has also participated in both the Science Bowl and Knowledge Bowl.

He is a straight-A student who has been the co-captain of his tennis squad and co-chair of the annual blood drive.

"Academically, Michael is in the top 5 percent of his graduating class," wrote Dr. Gerard J. Fennell in his recommendation letter. "He has gained this position in class rank while navigating the shoals that an inner city school places before a student. His intelligence and tenacity are key ingredients to his success."

Established in 1963 as a part of West Virginia's Centennial Celebration, the national Youth Science Camp annually hosts two student delegates from each state and from the District of Columbia for a four-week summer forum.

The 102 delegates exchange ideas with leading scientists and other professionals from the academic and corporate worlds on topics such as the fate of the rain forests, robotics, fractal geometry and the human genome project. Delegates also present seminars covering their own areas of interest and research.

Matthew and Christina will travel to Charleston, West Virginia on June 27 and return home on July 23. The National Youth Science Foundation covers the expenses.

The state also selects four alternates for the program. This year, the four alternates selected were: Patrick Gorman of Upper Montclair, Allen Lin of Holmdel, Catherine Xu of Monmouth Junction and Sarah Bolis of Bayonne.

For more information about the program, contact the Public Information Office at 609-292-1126 or visit the National Youth Science Camp online at: