Student Named Top 300 Scholar by Society for Science

Jan 15, 2021

Independence Student Jeffrey Qian

Congratulations to Independence High School senior Jeffrey Qian who has been named a top 300 scholar in the 2021 Regeneron Science Talent Search by the Society for Science. The talent search is the nation’s oldest and most prestigious science and math competition for high school seniors.

Qian was selected from more than 1,700 applicants across 11 countries based on his exceptional research skills, commitment to academics and innovative thinking. With Qian’s selection as a top 300 scholar, he is now eligible to become a top 40 finalist.

Qian’s project “Emotion Polarity Analysis: A NLP Deep Learning Model For Detecting Imperilled COVID-19 Frontline Workers” used natural language processing and artificial intelligence to analyze the emotions behind social media tweets and identify posts from frontline workers (doctors, nurses or first responders) asking for critical resources such as personal protective equipment and other support.

The emotion polarity analysis classifies whether emotions revealed by a sentence are associated with satisfaction or needs not met. 

“As the pandemic progresses with no signs of stopping, frontline workers are taking to social media in search of relief,” Qian said. “However, more often than not, their pleas do not come across donors or critical resource distributors because of the hectic environment of social media platforms. 

“As a result, I felt inspired to create the AIDirect.org platform which focuses on the core AI algorithm design that powers such a platform.”

The Regeneron Science Talent Search provides students with a national stage to present original research and celebrates the hard work and discoveries of young scientists who are bringing a fresh perspective to significant global challenges. 

“The remarkable drive, creativity and intellectual curiosity that each one of these scholars possesses represents a hopeful outlook for our future and our collective wellbeing,” said Maya Ajmera, President and CEO of Society for Science. 

As a top 300 scholar, Qian has been awarded a $2,000 prize which he is folding back into the expansion of AIDdirect.org’s operations.

“The current platform mainly supports identifying those frontline workers in need,” Qian said. “My plan for AIDirect.org 2.0 is to match aid providers, such as charity organizations, government agencies and community volunteers, with frontline workers in need.”

Congratulations to Qian for his forward thinking and best of luck at the next stage of the competition.

Click here to see the full list of scholars and learn more about the Society for Science.

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