Landon Maffo

 Landon Maffo, an incoming junior at Carlin Combined School is one of 34 students selected to attend the Joint Science and Technology Institute East conference this summer.

JSTI East is a two-week residential program in Maryland for current high school students and teachers that exposes them to scientific research through hands-on projects. This program enables participants to work with DoD scientists and STEM experts to inspire and increase awareness of career opportunities in STEM-related fields.

According to the JSTI website, the institute received 5,000 applications.

Physics and math are at the top of Maffo’s list of favorite subjects in school.

“We don’t have a ton of research opportunities at the high school level, so I think it will be neat to experience something like that,” said Maffo.

Carlin Combined computer science teacher, Brande Johnson, explained Maffo is one of Carlin Combined’s top performing students.

“Landon began taking AP classes just as a freshman and is currently enrolled in college level courses as a sophomore,” said Johnson. “He’s in chess club, plays sports, and will be the student body president next year. He does all the things and still manages to maintain perfect grades. He is such a hard-working student, so for me, he was an easy one to recommend.”

Landon was also recommended by biology teacher Melissa Jones.

“Landon is an exceptional student,” said Jones. “I don’t have very many students when we are running an experiment over several days that come in on their own time just to see how the experiment is progressing. Most students just show up for their class hour, look at what happened between day 1 and day 2. Landon comes in throughout the day, checks and sees what is going on. He’s probably one of my most curious students I have ever taught.”

Maffo is one of seven students to represent JSTI attendees from Carlin. Along with Maffo, Spring Creek Middle School student Isabelle Hansen will attend the JSTI middle school component conference this summer.

JSTI is a part of the STEM Academies for Students offered by The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education. ORISE is a U.S. Department of Energy asset that is dedicated to enabling critical scientific, research, and health initiatives of the department and its laboratory system.