JMS Students Receive High Honors in Academic Competitions

Seventh-Grader Soham Dam Received Top Scores in Mathematics Competitions

Seventh-grader Soham Dam recently took part in the Mathcounts Chapter Invitational Competition and has qualified for the state-level competition. This is a national middle school mathematics competition that builds problem-solving skills through four levels of competition. Soham had the top score from our school and advanced to the chapter regional invitationals. Based on this competition, he qualified as one of the region’s top five students and will move onto the state competition.

Soham also sat for the American Invitational Mathematics Exam (AIME) run by the Mathematical Association of America. On the American Mathematics Competition (AMC) 10 test, Soham earned the highest school score, a Certificate of Achievement for students in grade 8 and below who scored 90 or above, and a Certificate of Distinction awarded to students that met the threshold. In addition, he placed as an AIME qualifier. Prior to this test, Soham also sat for the AMC 8, where he placed in the top one percent of all students nationally.

About 56,000 students sit for this test. His scores also helped both Jefferson and Mellon earn a special Certificate of Merit, which is based on the combined scores of a school's top three students. While there were just over 500 schools to receive this certificate, only three were from Pennsylvania.

A thank you to all who helped Soham and coach or sponsor these math programs including Mr. Blount, who coaches the JMS MathCounts Club.

JMS Wins Second Place Overall in the Western Pennsylvania Science Bowl

In only their second year of competition, the JMS Science Bowl team placed second among all schools competing in this year's competition (held on Zoom) on Saturday, March 6. The team participants were sixth-grader Caleb Campanaro, seventh-graders Soham Dam and Michael Zhu, and eighth-grader Sally Tan.

Students were sponsored and coached by sixth-grade science teachers Debra Mercier and Cindy Martz.

JMS Takes First (four times) in This Year's Pennsylvania Junior Academy of Science (PJAS) Competition

JMS students achieved four first place and two second-place recognitions at this year's PJAS competition!

Congratulations to first place winners Jessica Yang, Sally Tan, Laila Polatand Michael Zhu as well as to second place winners Sam Wetzel and Clara Sun. The first-place winners will now move on to the state competition organized by Pennsylvania State University.

  • Jessica Yang conducted a behavioral science project called "Sound's Effect on Memory"
  • Laila Polat conducted a chemistry project called "Thermal Impacts of Disintegration of Ibuprofen Formulations
  • Sally Tan conducted a computer science project called "Code Deciphering"
  • Michael Zhu conducted a botany experiment called "The Effect of Tea on Plant Growth"

Thank you to all of the students who participated this year. More than 600 students from around the Pittsburgh area competed by conducting and presenting experiments in various fields of science. Great job all!

Students were sponsored and coached by Kathryn Duchin and Ed Petsko.

JMS Earns Honorable Mention at Shakespeare Monologue & Scene Contest

Congratulations to the sixth-grade trio of Shaylin Short, Emma Curren, and Caroline Rost for recently earning an honorable mention in this year's Pittsburgh Public Theatre's Shakespeare Monologue and Scene Contest!

There were about 500 video submissions of scenes and monologues from over 600 students in the region. Shaylin, Emma, and Caroline performed a powerful scene from the play Macbeth with Shaylin performing as Lady Macbeth, Emma as the Doctor, and Caroline as the Gentlewoman.

Congratulations also go out sixth-grader Peter Goslin for his performance as Malvolio in Twelfth Night, sixth-grader Allie Miller for her performance as Helena in All's Well That Ends Well, and eighth-grader Anouk Ritivoi for performing as Ariel in The Tempest.


Jefferson Middle School
21 Moffett Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15243
(412) 344-2120



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