Buchholz senior receives national science honor 

Buchholz senior Angela Gao was recently named one of 300 Regeneron Science Talent Search scholars.
Buchholz senior Angela Gao was recently named one of 300 Regeneron Science Talent Search scholars. (Courtesy of Alachua County Public Schools)
Courtesy of Alachua County Public Schools

A Buchholz High School senior was recently named a 2023 scholar for the Regeneron Science Talent Search.  

Angela Gao was selected for her “Iron Modified Biochar Recovers Phosphorus from Wastewater as Fertilizer Through Column Filters and Flow Reactor” project.  

As a Regeneron scholar, she will receive a $2000 award, with an additional $2000 going to Buchholz for STEM-related activities (science, technology, engineering, and math). 

Become A Member

Mainstreet does not have a paywall, but pavement-pounding journalism is not free. Join your neighbors who make this vital work possible.

Buchholz senior Angela Gao.
Courtesy of Alachua County Public Schools Buchholz senior Angela Gao.

“I want to do my best to help reduce the negative consequences of phosphorus and turn those consequences into something positive,” Gao said in a press release. “I don’t want just to address one side of the issue but look at it overall.” 

Gao focuses on using Biochar, the residue left over when organic material is burned. For years, she has been interested in Biochar’s potential to support water sustainability.  

Last summer, she represented Florida at the international Stockholm Junior Water Prize competition, which drew top students from across the globe who have developed projects to solve water challenges. 

“I grew up in Florida, where aquatic ecosystems surround us,” she said. “Water is critical, and I’ve always been fascinated by water and water sustainability.” 

Gao’s interests spread much further than Biochar’s. She is on the national championship Buchholz High School math team, the Future Business Leaders of America club president, a debate team member, a Girl Scout, a synchronized swimmer, and enjoys playing the violin.  

Gao will attend the University of Pennsylvania after graduation and plans to pursue research in STEM during and after college.  

Gao is the second Buchholz senior in two years to be named one of the 300 Regeneron Science Talent Search scholars. Last year, Anjana Balachandar was selected from a pool of 1,804 applicants from 603 high schools across 46 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and eight other countries. 

The Regeneron Science Talent Search is the nation’s oldest and most prestigious science and math competition for high school seniors.  

Each scholar, selected from 1,949 entrants, receives a $2,000 award, with an additional $2,000 going to their respective school, resulting in $1.2 million in total scholar awards from Regeneron.  

The talent search recognizes and empowers the nation’s most promising young scientists. It provides students with a national stage to showcase new ideas and challenge conventional ways of thinking.  

On Jan. 24, 40 of the scholars will be announced as finalists in this year’s program. Finalists will receive a minimum award of $25,000 and travel to Washington, D.C., in March for the final competition. The top 10 honors in that competition range from $40,000 to $250,000. 

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments