Palo Alto High School math whiz Lynnelle Ye came home from the national Siemens Competition in New York last weekend with second-place honors and a $50,000 scholarship.
The 17-year-old senior worked her way through several levels of competition this fall with her project on game theory. Her research focused on a game called "Graph Chomp," where two sides take turns erasing segments of a graph. She analyzed what effect special graphs and circumstances have on the outcome of the game.
A total of 1,348 team and individual projects were entered this year in the Siemens Competition, an annual scholarship contest for math and science students run by the Siemens Foundation and the College Board.
Ye won the regional competition at the California Institute of Technology in November, which qualified her for the New York competition Dec. 3-7 and won her a $3,000 scholarship.
In New York, she competed against five other projects entered by individual students. Ruoyi Jiang, of East Setuaket, N.Y., took home the first-place $100,000 scholarship for his research on chemotherapy drug resistance.
"I was really happy," Ye said of receiving the award. "I had no idea what to expect, so I wasn't expecting anything."
E-mail Diana Samuels at firstname.lastname@example.org.