Three PMHS students named to list of top 300 scholars in national science competition


From left, Emma Van Praagh, Katie Brandler and Leah Sherbansky.

Pelham Memorial High School students Emma Van Praagh, Katie Brandler and Leah Sherbansky were named among the top 300 scholars in Regeneron’s esteemed Science Talent Search. This is the first year three PMHS students have been named semifinalists in the competition.

The student’s projects were:

  • Katie Brandler: “The First Report of Marine Debris as a Dispersal Vector for Native and Introduced Species in the Temperate Northwest Atlantic Ocean”
  • Emma Van Praagh: “Investigating Connections Between Sensorimotor Impairment and Resting-State Functional MRI of the Spinal Cord in Multiple Sclerosis”
  • Leah Sherbansky: “Exploring the Relationship of SSTR2 Immunohistochemical and Textural Features to Neuroendocrine Tumor Grade”

The top 300 scholars were chosen from 1,949 applicants from 627 high schools spanning 48 states, Puerto Rico and four other countries.

“It’s good to know that there is so much value being placed on the future scientists of our generation,” said Sherbansky. “It’s an honor to be recognized in such an important competition, and I’m so proud of all my teammates, especially Katie and Emma.”

Winners were selected based on their outstanding research, community involvement, leadership skills, commitment to academics, creativity in asking scientific questions and promise as future STEM leaders as demonstrated through the independent research projects, essays and recommendations they submitted.

“I’m so excited to see our students succeed at such a high level,” said Joseph DiBello, teacher of the science research program at PMHS. “It really is the testament of all the hard work all our students put into the program and seeing it on such a big stage is amazing. I couldn’t be more proud to be a part of it.”