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Davidson Academy student selected to serve as World Science Scholar

By Bob Conrad

A Davidson Academy student was recently selected to serve as World Science Scholar, an honor that few high-school students worldwide received this year.

Megan Davi, a junior at the academy, is one of the 40 students, ages 11 to 17, selected for the two-year program. Davi takes self-paced courses in science, technology, engineering and math–or STEM.

Her instructors are world-renown experts in their fields and include Nobel and Breakthrough Prize winners, authors and scientists. Physicist and author Brian Greene, cardiologist and evolutionary biologist Barbara Naterson-Horowitz and Nobel Laureate Barry Barish are among the teachers.

“Scholars also join a vibrant and supportive online community that encourages discussion, debate and collaboration among the students, enabling them to forge lifelong connections with their peers,” the Science Scholars program notes online. “Ranging in age from 11-17, the Scholars bring a variety of interests and accomplishments, in addition to their exceptional academic abilities.”

Davi applied for the program earlier this year. She said she is excited about what she’s learning.

“We’ve taken one course on space, time and matter,” she said. “So you look at physics within the extremes of law … so special relativity, general relativity and quantum mechanics. We got to take that course with Brian Greene, and learn a lot about … more theoretical sides of physics.”

She’s now in a class on medicine and how people get illnesses and afflictions, such as scoliosis, from an evolutionary standpoint.

“We are taking a course about species spanning approaches to medicine,” Davi added. “Instead of just looking at medicine through the more traditional causal route of … what directly causes a given affliction, to look at .. why we’re evolutionarily primed to have the weaknesses that we have, and that’s also very interesting.”

Davi said she wasn’t into biology before the program, but getting access to cutting-edge thinkers in their fields has exposed her to different viewpoints and academic disciplines.

What’s next for her? Even more advanced studies.

“I’m going to be taking number theory next year since I finished [calculus] three, then differential equations and linear algebra,” she said.

Then it’s on to advanced chemistry. Davi said she’ll be going to college in 2023.

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