CCAC participates in the world’s largest international pre-college science competition and fair

CCAC Faculty and Staff at ISEF web.jpg
CCAC 3D printer demo web.jpg
Article by: CCAC Public Relations

PITTSBURGH-The Community College of Allegheny County participated for the first time in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF), the world's largest international pre-college science competition, held the week of May 14 at the David Lawrence Convention Center.

Each year, approximately 1,800 high school students from more than 75 countries, regions and territories are awarded the opportunity to showcase their independent research and compete for on average $4 million in prizes. Intel ISEF unites these top young scientific minds, showcasing their talents on an international stage, where doctoral level scientists review and judge their work. 

CCAC participated in the Intel ISEF Education Outreach Program during Public Day on May 17, which was attended by approximately 2,500 local students and their teachers. The overall goal was to showcase CCAC's diverse STEM-based offerings and how these programs are custom designed for entering into the workforce upon completion of an associate degree or certificate. Representatives from CCAC showcased Biology, Physics, Chemistry and Mechatronics, demonstrating some fundamental science techniques and explaining that the same techniques can be applied in industry and research. 

"We were able to attract many young minds and motivate them in the STEM discipline," said Abiraman Srinivasan, CCAC associate professor of Biology and a standing judge at the competition. "Also, many parents and students came to our stall and learned about our various STEM degree and certificate programs that are being offered campuswide." 

A total of 11 faculty and staff members from CCAC North and Boyce campuses and West Hills and Braddock Hills centers, along with seven Biology students, participated in the fair. They demonstrated basic experiments and emphasized how the college's STEM programs train students in understanding scientific concepts while preparing them for transfer to a four-year institution or for the hi-tech workforce. A major attraction for attendees was the 3-D printer from the CCAC Mechatronics Department, which created a perfect replica of the NASA Space Shuttle.

"There was a lot of 'wow factor,' and we were able to attract a large number of students," said Srinivasan. "We were situated between MIT and CMU; all the elite institutions were there, and CCAC was there along with them."

For more information about CCAC's STEM programs, go to:

Manning the CCAC booth at the fair are (from the left) student Austin Fitch, administrator James Bender, faculty members Joshua Kern and Rakesh Shah, administrator Dean Baktay, and faculty members Abiraman Srinivasan and Dale Jacobs.

CCAC Mechatronics Adjunct Professor Joshua Kern and Mechatronics student Austin Fitch demonstrate a 3-D printer to students attending Intel ISEF.

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