Students from Lammersville Unified School District took most of the top awards at this past weekend’s STEAM Fair & Expo at the San Joaquin County Office of Education (SJCOE) in Stockton.

Saturday’s 64th Annual STEAM Fair & Expo drew entries from 268 K-12 students from 22 schools across seven school districts. Judges selected the winners after reviewing 176 individual, group, and whole-class projects.

The Best of Show awards went to Mountain House High School's Jordan Prawira for his project, “Pura Aer 2,” in the grades 6-12 division, and Lammersville Elementary School’s Aditi Giraddi won Best of Show in the K-5 division for “WiFi Signal Blockers.”

They are among eight students who qualified to enter their projects in the California Science and Engineering Fair on April 11, via an online platform.

Local students qualifying in the sixth- through eighth-grade science competition include Aishwarya Lenka, Jefferson Elementary School, first place for “UV and Light Intensity vs Polarizer,” and Alok Hiriyur, Altamont Elementary School, second place for “Making a Zinc Battery More Effective.” Also qualifying was Ayush Kumar, Veritas Elementary School in Manteca, third place for “Desalination Determination.”

Also qualifying for state in the sixth- through eighth-grade engineering competition was Aryan Agarwal, Peter Hansen Elementary School, first place for “Every Drop Matters.” In the math/computer science competition, Maheep Singh, Bethany Elementary School, qualified with first place for “Real Time Sign Language Translator App.”

In the ninth through 12th grade engineering competition, Sai Harish Balamurugan, Mountain House High, qualified for the state competition with first place for “DODD 3.0.” Also from Mountain House High, Divya Matta qualified in the math/computer science competition with first place for “Assessing Financial Risk Using Machine Learning Models.”

More than 60 STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) professionals, teachers, University of the Pacific college students, and other volunteers from the community helped judge the projects and conduct interviews. Additionally, 20 high school students volunteered from Sierra High School and Lathrop High School to help interview the K-5 students about their projects and support hands-on activities in the SJCOE FabLab.

This year the fair brought back the Expo portion of the event, which was open to the public and included hands-on exhibits from community partners. NASA shared demonstrations and models about the Capstone Project and IR cameras, SJCOE hosted viewings in its new Star Lab sponsored by Synopsys Outreach Foundation and Brocchini Family Farms, SJCOE FabLab provided multiple opportunities for engineering and coding, Stockton Lapidary and Minerals Club showcased rock displays, Stockton Astronomical Society displayed and demonstrated the use of different telescopes, Head Start San Joaquin hosted a STEM-themed reading and activity corner, and CodeStack offered information about computer engineering.

Each year, the SJCOE awards thousands of dollars to students and teachers who exhibit and articulate superior levels of understanding in the areas of science and engineering.

• Contact the Tracy Press at or 209-835-3030.


STEAM Fair Awards

Award winners came from Lammersville Unified School District (LUSD), River Islands Academies (RIA), Manteca Unified School District (MUSD), Jefferson School District (JSD), and Stockton Unified School District (SUSD).

Kindergarten through third grade

• Class Project Winner

Mrs. Scaffidi’s second-grade class, Lammersville Elementary School (LUSD), “Ice Ice Crazy”

• Science

First Place – Zoey Cabrera, EPIC Academy (RIA), “Beware, Beware, Beware Yummy Growing Gummy Bear”

Second Place – Rishaan Deshpande, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Soil Erosion”

Third Place – Theodore Ho, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Metamorphosis”

• Engineering

First Place – Rathan Pingala, Questa Elementary School (LUSD)

Second Place – Varshitha Satheeshkumar, River Islands Technology Academy (RIA), “Dirty Water into Clean Water”

Third Place – Diya Gowtham, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Float or Sink”

• Showcase

First Place (tie) – Eashaan Madan, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Freshy- The Water Dispenser”

First Place (tie) – Anthony Jayden Jude, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Volcano”

Second Place – Anahita Riyaz Ahmed, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Fruit Powered Battery”

Fourth/fifth grade:

• Science

First Place – Tanvi Yenigalla, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Hydro Cleanser”

Second Place – Yuvan Jeevan, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Lunar Model”

Third Place – Manav Maheshwari, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Water on Water”

• Engineering

First Place – Manav Shah and Mourya Nagireddi, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Transforming Milk into Plastic”

Second Place – Asher Wade, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Catapult”

Third Place – Ajay Dasary, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Artificial Blubber Experiment”

• Showcase

First Place – Aayush Motagi, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Escapade of Tomorrow”

Second Place – Mannat Kaur, Veritas Elementary School (MUSD), “Salmon”

Third Place – Lasya Sriraga Chatuvedula and Hasini Lakshmi Gudimela, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Model Elevator”

Sixth through eighth grade

• Science

First Place – Aishwarya Lenka, Jefferson Elementary (JSD), “UV and Light Intensity vs Polarizer”

Second Place – Alok Hiriyur, Altamont Elementary (LUSD), “Making a Zinc Battery More Effective”

Third Place – Ayush Kumar, Veritas Elementary (MUSD), “Desalination Determination”

• Engineering

First Place – Aryan Agarwal, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Every Drop Matters”

Second Place – Sai Keshav, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Water Filtration”

Third Place – Laasya Elisetty, River Islands Technology Academy (RIA), “Insight Oven”

• Math/Computer Science

First Place – Maheep Singh, Bethany Elementary School (LUSD), “Real Time Sign Language Translator App”

• Showcase

First Place – Thanmaya Reddy Kankanala, Anthony Traina Elementary School (JSD), “Tula”

Second Place – Harshika Tahmizhselvan, Anthony Traina Elementary School (JSD), “Quest to Freedom - The Robot Apocalypse”

Third Place – Jacob Ha, Lodi SDA, “The Madalorian - The Rescue”

Ninth through 12th grade

• Science

First Place – Pranav Saravanan, Mountain House High School (LUSD), “Thermoplastic Monomer Based Antimicrobial”

Second Place – Abigail Jimy, Micheele Vaiz and Khushi Kolte, Mountain House High School (LUSD), “Bananas: The Future of Bioplastics”

Third Place – Valerie Valencia, Cesar Chavez High School (SUSD), “Kinetic Energy on the Move”

• Engineering

First Place – Sai Harish Balamurugan, Mountain House High School (LUSD), “DODD 3.0”

• Math/Computer Science

First Place – Divya Matta, Mountain House High School (LUSD), “Assessing Financial Risk Using Machine Learning Models”

• Environmental Awards

Rishaan Deshpande, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Soil Erosion”

Tanvi Yenigalla, Questa Elementary School (LUSD), “Hydro Cleanser”

Manav Shah and Mourya Nagireddi, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Transforming Milk into Plastic”

Vyom Aggarwal, EPIC Academy RIA), “Is Green Really Green?”

Aryan Agarwal, Peter Hansen Elementary School (LUSD), “Every Drop Matters”

Namandeep Nijjar, Bethany Elementary School (LUSD), “Fresh Sea Water”

Kavya Kamalakumar, Lammersville Elementary School (LUSD), “Windmills”

• STEAM Spirit Award

Analia Carrillo and M.J. Bacnis, Veritas Elementary School (MUSD), “Hardness in City Water”

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