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Two Los Altos teens receive National Scholarships

TWO LOS ALTOS TEENS RECEIVE NATIONAL SCHOLARSHIPS FOR UNMATCHED ACHIEVEMENTS IN ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE RESEARCH

Jack Albright and Anushka Sanyal each to be awarded $10,000 as 2020 Davidson Fellow Scholarship Winners

Los Altos, Calif. – The Davidson Fellows Scholarship Program has announced the 2020 scholarship winners. Among the honorees are Jack Albright, 16, and Anushka Sanyal, 16, both of Los Altos. Only 20 students across the country are recognized as scholarship winners each year.

“I am incredibly honored to be named a Davidson Fellow and am humbled to be included in such an esteemed and talented group of young people striving to make positive changes in the world,” said Albright, a rising junior at The Nueva School in Hillsborough. “I am grateful to the Davidson Institute for generously supporting my education and for giving me the opportunity to share my work on machine learning and Alzheimer’s disease.”

After his grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2017, Albright developed a machine learning model capable of predicting future Alzheimer’s diagnoses. When combined with a novel preprocessing algorithm Albright developed in parallel, his machine learning model was able to accurately predict the onset of mild cognitive impairment and dementia in patients suspected of having Alzheimer's disease on a month-by-month basis, up to seven years into the future.

“Having my work recognized is a tremendous honor,” said Anushka Sanyal, a rising senior at Homestead High School in Cupertino. “I am truly humbled by it and very excited to be included in the 2020 Davidson Fellows among many inspiring, talented students.”

Sanyal’s work identifies a novel neuronal receptor signaling pathway (pathway through which neurons send signals) which could be used to develop potential therapies for Alzheimer’s disease. Her research shows that nAChR α7 and GPSP lie within the same pathway and should be tested further due to the potential to yield a novel therapeutic approach for Alzheimer’s patients.

“We are proud to announce the 2020 Davidson Fellows Scholarship recipients and applaud them for their hard work and achievement in their fields of study,” said Bob Davidson, founder of the Davidson Institute. “By being awarded this recognition, these students have shown immense skill and work ethic, and they should be commended as they continue their educational and research journeys while continuing to work to solve some of the world’s most vexing problems.”

The 2020 Davidson Fellows will be honored during a digital reception on September 30, 2020.

The Davidson Fellows Scholarship program offers $50,000, $25,000 and $10,000 college scholarships to students 18 or younger, who have completed significant projects that have the potential to benefit society in the fields of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, literature and music. The Davidson Fellows Scholarship has provided more than $8.2 million in scholarship funds to 366 students since its inception in 2001, and has been named one of the most prestigious undergraduate scholarships by U.S. News & World Report. It is a program of the Davidson Institute for Talent Development, a national nonprofit organization headquartered in Reno, Nev. that supports profoundly gifted youth.

About the Davidson Institute
Founded by Bob Davidson in 1999, the Davidson Institute for Talent Development recognizes, nurtures and supports profoundly intelligent young people, and provides opportunities for them to develop their talents to make a positive difference. The Institute offers support through a number of programs and services, including the Davidson Fellows Scholarship and the Davidson Academy of Nevada. For more information about the 2020 Davidson Fellows, please visit www.DavidsonGifted.org/Fellows-Scholarship.

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