McAllen ISD students' science experiment is launched into space

Seven students from the McAllen Independent School District received both national and local acclaim recently, including having a science experiment chosen for the International Space Station.

“The Effects of Perchlorate on Plant Germination in Simulated Martian Conditions in Microgravity” was launched in February.   File photo

Seven students from the McAllen Independent School District received both national and local acclaim recently, including having a science experiment chosen for the International Space Station.

Several groups of students were honored including International Baccalaureate Diploma Program students Gabriel Ramirez of McAllen High School and Calvin Beck of McAllen Memorial High School. Ramirez and Beck were named National Merit Scholar finalists. This spring, they will go up against 1.6 million high school juniors to compete for 7,500 available National Merit Scholarships.

“We are very proud, for this is a statement to their hard work and everything they do in and out of the classroom,” McAllen ISD superintendent Dr. J.A. Gonzalez said.

In addition, three McAllen ISD students -- Sabrina Benitez, Sofia Escobar and Juan Pablo Flanagan -- had their science experiment chosen out of nearly 2,500 entries to be sent to the International Space Station. “The Effects of Perchlorate on Plant Germination in Simulated Martian Conditions in Microgravity” was launched in February and will study the feasibility of growing tomatoes on Mars.

In art recognition, designs by seventh-grader Grace Kelly of Morris Middle School and Lamar Academy freshman Travis Zigler were chosen in the middle and high school mission-patch design competition. Their designs were chosen from among nearly 2,000 submitted in the art competition.

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