A Homestead High School student has been chosen as a regional finalist for a scholarship at the 2016 Seimens Competition.

Senior Katherine Cao is one of 96 finalists out of almost 2,200 applicants from across the country.  As a finalist, she is eligible for a college scholarship between $1,000 and $100,000.

The scholarship can be used toward tuition and fees, books, supplies and equipment, as well as on-campus room and board, according to the official website.

Cao is the only finalist from Wisconsin.

The Siemens Competiton helps to “increase access to higher educational opportunities for students gifted in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM),” according to a news release from the district.

Those applying can apply as an individual or as a team.  Team projects are evaluated separately from those by individuals, according to the competition website.

Judges look at originality, creativity, academic rigor, and clarity of communications with student research projects.  Discovery Education creates a panel of PhD research scientists who conduct initial reviews of the projects.

Discovery Education has partnered with Siemens and is working to “recognize and build a strong pipeline for promising students nationwide,” the release states.

Homestead Principal Brett Bowers said the STEM program is an important focus for all schools.

“We are incredibly proud of Katherine and all of the hard work, dedication and talent she has demonstrated in this national competition,” Bowers said.  “Honors like this are a reflection of all the great things happening in our high school, as well as throughout our school district.”

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