Sixth grader takes first in science competition

June 03, 2000

Alecia Foster

LOWELL -- Lara Injeyan knows just conducting a science experiment

isn't enough to do well in the California State Science Fair.

"I made sure I knew all the information so I could impress the

judges," she said confidently.

And that she did.

The sixth-grader at Chamlian Armenian School took first place in the


state competition's physics category held at the Los Angeles Convention

Center May 22-23.

Chamlian Principal Vazken Madenlian said Lara's win marked the sixth

year the school has won a first- or second-place award in the


"It has become a tradition here," he said.

Lara won for her science project on interferometry, the use of waves

of light to measure distance.

Her experiment was complex, but Lara explained it with ease -- and


With guidance from her father, she constructed an interferometer and

used it to measure how the waves of light traveled through water and a

glass lense.

Her hypothesis was there would be noticeable differences, and she was


Lara admits she has an affinity for science, particularly physics.

"It's my favorite subject," she said.

Madenlian said the school has a strong science program, but attributes

the students' numerous wins to something more -- an encouraging

atmosphere, he said.

Lara was one of 13 winners from her school's fair, chosen to advance

to the county competition.

Four Chamlian students, including Lara, advanced from the county to

the state fair.

Some 907 students representing 327 schools participated in this year's

state fair.

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