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2017 Virginia Regional JSHS
James Madison University
March 16-17, 2017



Welcome  to the Virginia Junior Science and Humanities Symposium Webpage

The 2017 Virginia Junior Science and Humanities Symposium is scheduled to be held at James Madison University in Harrisonburg on Thursday March 16-17, 2017.

The VaJSHS is open to any public, private or homeschooled/online student registered in grades 9-12 who resides in the Commonwealth of Virginia  including the Northern Virginia suburbs . A home schooled student may apply for no more than 4 years and must advance a grade level each year. Since students in the Northern Virginia Suburbs are also eligible to apply to the Greater DC Metro JSHS, each school must choose which Symposium it’s students may apply for each year.  No school may have students apply to both Symposia in any given year. However, a school may switch from Symposia from year to year. Teams of no more than 3 may enter and present a research project, but a team project cannot win scholarship money or advance to the National JSHS.   

All students must be nominated by a teacher or administrator from his/her school except home/online students who may be nominated by the parent responsible for his/her educational plan. Private schools may nominate 2 students, public high schools up to 4 students and Governors/ Magnet schools may nominate up to 12 students each. First time Governor’s  and  Magnet schools will be asked to list their feeder schools and locations for our records. The VaJSHS  primary priority is to provide opportunity for underserved students in rural communities and inner cities to present their scientific research, therefore the quality of the research is not the only criteria for selection of a student’s abstract. Our goal is not to find and reward the best research, but to find and encourage potentially good scientists. To apply a student must be nominated by a teacher or administrator or home schooling parent, must register through this CVENT site between Jan 15 and Feb 15, 2017, must upload an abstract of not more than 200 words, single spaced in New Times Roman 12 font. All students must also download, fill out and upload a Statement of Outside Assistance. Warning: If you did research in a government, industrial or university/college lab you must have your outside mentor approve your abstract and approve and sign your Statement of Outside Assistance. Don’t wait until the last minute! Students who are selected will notified no later than March 10, 2017 and will need to prepare a 10-12 minute oral presentation with power point slides.

The 2017 Virginia Junior Science and Humanities Symposium will run from approximately 4PM on Thursday March 16 to about 3PM on Friday March 17, 2017 in Taylor Hall on the campus of James Madison University.  Onsite registration is scheduled for 3-6PM Thursday March 16 at the Quality Inn Harrisonburg.  Shuttle bus service from the Quality Inn Harrisonburg to Taylor Hall and meal vouchers for JMU dining services will be provided for all participants including parents. Lodging at the Quality Inn will be provided for all students and teachers who reside over 60 miles from Harrisonburg. We can not guarantee space in the Quality Inn for parents because of space and cost restraints. The Sleep Inn is next to the Quality Inn.  All participants including potential student presenters, teachers, administrators, parents/ guardians, siblings/  judges and volunteers must register through CVENT. Chaperoning administrators and Home school parents should register as teachers. All other parents/ guardians and siblings must register as guests.


JSHS is designed to challenge, engage, and publicly recognize students (Grades 9-12) conducting research in the sciences, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM). Individual students compete for scholarships and recognition by presenting the results of their original research efforts before a panel of judges and an audience of their peers. Opportunities for career exploration, research lab visits, peer discussions, and networking are planned. By participating in regional and national symposia, students may:

  • Participate in a forum honoring individual achievement in STEM;
  • Network with peers who have similar interests;
  • Hear research presentations by other students;
  • Develop skills to help prepare for undergraduate and graduate pursuits in STEM fields;
  • Hear nationally renowned scientists speak on their work;
  • Qualify for significant scholarships and other recognition; and
  • Advance to the national symposium.


Who attends JSHS?

Any public, private or home schooled high school student in Virginia may apply to the Virginia Junior Science and Humanities Symposium. A home schooled student may apply for no more than 4 years and must advance a grade level each year. Schools in Northern Virginia may have students apply to either the Greater Metro Washington DC JSHS or the Virginia JSHS, but not both. Teams of no more than 3 may enter and present a research project, but a team project cannot win scholarship money or advance to the National JSHS.

 How do I present at the Regional JSHS?

  • STEP 1: Students in grades 9–12 select an area of research: 
    • Environmental Science
    • Life Science
    • Medicine and Health/Behavioral Science
    • Biomedical Sciences, Molecular/Cellular
    • Engineering and Technology
    • Math and Computer Sciences/Computer Engineering
    • Physical Sciences
    • Chemistry

  • STEP 2: Students conduct original research.

  • STEP 3: By February 15, 2017, students submit for evaluation an abstract reporting the results of their STEM research.  Students must fill out CVENT registration and upload an abstract of 200 words or less, single spaced, in a word document in Times Roman font 12. The header to the abstract is to include the student(s) name(s), school name and city, mentor name and title of the project. Also download the Statement of Outside Assistance and fill it out with teacher and mentor signatures and upload the pdf file all no later than Feb 15, 2016.

  • STEP 4:  The Regional JSHS assembles a review panel to review students’ abstracts and select students to present their result in oral presentation.  A total 70 students will be invited to present their research in oral sessions.


What if my abstract is not accepted?

If more students apply than there is room for presentations, students will be selected in accordance to our priority of encouraging scientific research by rural, inner city and disadvantaged minority students. Also we prioritize participation by the Governor’s Schools. The non acceptance of an abstract should not be viewed as a failure or lack of good science. Students will be notified by email no later than March 10, 2017 if there is not room for their presentation. 


 What are the important dates for the 2017 Regional JSHS?
  • Registration is open! - January 1, 2017
  • Notification to students to confirm participation in oral presentations. - March 10, 2017
  • Registration deadline – All students, teachers,guests, and STEM professionals/volunteers complete registration to attend the Regional JSHS.  - February 15, 2017



Students who are selected to make presentations at the Virginia JSHS have an opportunity to win undergraduate, tuition-based scholarships and cash awards from $200 to $2,000.  

The Academy of Applied Sciences will distribute $4,500 in academic scholarships to the top three regional finalists:

  • $2,000 to first place;
  • $1,500 to second place;
  • $1,000 to third place.

Students will receive certificates. Each section will have a gold medallion award. The gold medallion winners make up the selection pool for the three scholarship winners and 5 invitees to the National Junior Science and Humanities Symposium, except for team projects. Teams may receive gold medallions, but are not eligible for scholarships or trips to the National JSHS.

The top five finalists are invited to advance to the National JSHS.  Two of the five finalists will orally present their research in competition for military-sponsored scholarships; three of the five finalists will present their research in poster sessions and receive recognition and cash awards.  National JSHS scholarships are awarded as follows.

  • Eight $12,000 undergraduate, tuition scholarships, awarded to each of the 1st place finalists in the National research paper competition;
  • Eight $8,000 undergraduate, tuition scholarships, awarded to each of the 2nd place finalists in the National research paper competition; and
  • Eight $4,000 undergraduate, tuition scholarships, awarded to each of the 3rd place finalists in the National research paper competition.


For additional references to information on paper preparation, style and presentation, please refer to the National JSHS, Groundrules for student research presentation at the National JSHS. [See]



 JSHS is a Tri-Service – U.S. Army, Navy and Air Force −program that encourages high school students to conduct original research in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).  JSHS is a collaborative effort between the research arm of the Department of Defense and nationwide colleges and universities. JSHS aims to prepare and support students to contribute as future scientists and engineers, conducting STEM research on behalf of or directly for the Department of Defense (DoD), federal research laboratories to help advance the nation's scientific and technological progress. Through JSHS, over 8,000 youth annually compete in 48 regional symposia covering the U.S., Puerto Rico, and DoD Dependent Schools in Europe and the Pacific to receive recognition, incentives, and scholarships for their research achievements.


The Academy of Applied Science, a non-profit educational organization in Concord, New Hampshire, administers the National JSHS Program. The regional JSHS at James Madison University is co-operatively sponsored by the College of Mathematics and Sciences at JMU.



If you have more questions or concerns, please contact :

Dr. Thomas DeVore


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