It's the time of year when high school seniors are getting acceptance letters from college and trying make a decision. One senior, from Pasadena CA, has a bit more to think about. In addition to being an honor student at a career and technical school, her hobby is neuroscience, specifically brain plasticity. She even wrote a paper that was published in a medical journal. That's a lot more work than the Common App. Her study was about what happens when one area of the brain is damaged or injured, other areas compensate. Using a sensory device to stimulate these areas could result in better treatments for brain-injured patients.
The work certainly got some attention. Elexis Hernandez is now deciding on two offers of full-ride scholarships, one to Harvard and one to Yale. It's even more impressive because the numbers for college applications are way up this year, due to a bit of a baby boom in 2000. Competition for admission to college is fierce, especially for elite Ivy League schools. May 1st is the deadline for students to commit to the college of their choice, and it might take Elexis right up until that deadline to make her decision.