Aleks Stec from Sandy Creek High School was one of 45 students selected from throughout Georgia to present at the 2020 Georgia Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (GJSHS) which took place on February 23-25 at the University of Georgia.

At the GJSHS, high school students from across the state have the opportunity to present the results of their original scientific, engineering or mathematical research before a panel of judges and an audience of their peers, and compete for military-sponsored scholarships and other awards. The primary aims of the symposium are to promote original research and experimentation in science, engineering and mathematics at the high school level, and to publicly recognize students for outstanding achievement. Successful students at the state level advance to the National JSHS and may compete for significant military-sponsored scholarships and other awards.

Stec received seventh place after presenting his original research on bioplastics, a biodegradable material that comes from renewable sources, and could be a possible solution to reducing plastic pollution in the environment.

The JSHS aims to encourage continued interest and participation in the sciences and ultimately to widen the pool of trained scientific and engineering talent prepared to conduct research and development vital to our nation. The symposium is sponsored by the United States Department of the Army, Navy and Air Force.

The National Science Teachers Association, headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, administers the National JSHS in cooperation with universities and other educational institutions. Nationally, over 12,000 talented high school students participate in the JSHS by presenting the results of their scientific, engineering or mathematic research.