Three High School Finalists Selected for $185,000 Scholarship

The $185,000 National Academy Medical School Scholarship Challenge the Ultimate Thesis Contest

WASHINGTON, Oct. 1, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today, the National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists announced the three semi-finalists for the $185,000 National Academy Medical School Scholarship Challenge. In February 2014, at the Congress of Future Medical Leaders, 3,100 honor high school students were charged with identifying an unsolved medical/scientific/world health problem and then creating an original investigation of their own design to solve that problem.

From the 12 semi-finalists, three students were selected to present their research proposals on stage at the November Congress of Future Medical Leaders in Washington, DC. The Academy will award one full medical school scholarship covering tuition fees to a U.S.-based medical school (up to $185,000) to one student. In addition, two $10,000 medical school scholarships will be awarded to the runner-up finalists.  Scholars attending the November Congress will vote to determine the winners.

The students' investigations include a hypothesis or thesis for which students develop a research or other game plan to tackle and solve the medical problem they choose.

The Congress is an honors-only program for high school students who want to become physicians or go into medical research fields. The purpose of this event is to honor, inspire, motivate and direct the top students in the country who aspire to be physicians or medical scientists, to stay true to their dream and, after the event, to provide a path, plan and resources to help them reach their goal.

During the three-day Congress, Congress scholars will join other students from across the country and hear Nobel Laureates and National Medal of Science winners talk about leading medical research; be given advice from top medical school deans on what is to be expected in medical school; witness stories told by patients who are living medical miracles; be inspired by fellow teen medical science prodigies; and learn about cutting-edge advances and the future in medicine and medical technology.

The Academy offers many free services and programs to students who want to be physicians or go into medical science.

The National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists was founded on the belief that we must identify prospective medical talent at the earliest possible age and help these students acquire the necessary experience and skills to take them to the doorstep of this vital career. Based in Washington, D.C., the Academy was chartered as a nonpartisan, taxpaying institution to help address this crisis by working to identify, encourage and mentor students who wish to devote their lives to the service of humanity as physicians, medical scientists, technologists, engineers and mathematicians. Learn more at

The National Academy Medical School Scholarship Challenge finalists include:

Christian Pollema, a high school senior from North Sioux City, SD
Topic: Using the enzyme choline acetyltransferase to either prove or disprove the Cholinergic Theory and further Alzheimer's disease research.
Ruchit Patel, a high school junior from Piscataway, NJ
Topic: Using volatile organic compounds on the skin to detect the presence of Melanoma to create a quick and inexpensive screening test. &
Mekhala Rao, a high school junior from Mason, OH
Topic: Using the plant Echinacea to treat the bacteria CA-MRSA. &


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