Background on the VJAS and the Annual Symposium:

The Virginia Junior Academy of Science (VJAS) was founded in 1941 to discover and encourage scientific aptitude among secondary school students (grades 7 through 12) in Virginia and to foster fellowship between its members and the members of the Virginia Academy of Science (VAS). VJAS programs encourage students to continue their education in science, engineering and related fields and to develop a background among its members which will eventually lead to membership in the Virginia Academy of Science and other professional science organizations.

VJAS conducts an annual competition amongst middle school students. Students are challenged to research, define and conduct a scientific experiment and prepare a scientific paper to describe their experiment and results and then present the paper to a group of judges at the VJAS Annual Symposium. Papers are submitted to the VJAS for review and the best are accepted for presentation at the VJAS Annual Symposium.



7th grade boys

7th grade girls

 The whole group going to present
Virginia Junior Academy of Science (VJAS) Annual Symposium – TMS students show how it is done!

On May 23rd 2012, twenty eight students from TMS presented their science papers at the VJAS Annual Symposium held at Norfolk State University. Each presenter was required to deliver a presentation and answer questions from a panel of three judges (mostly college science professors) and the audience about their paper. All our TMS student scientists prepared dynamic and interesting presentations for the judges and responded with poise to the judges questions. Congratulations to them all for representing TMS so well!

The VJAS gives awards to the best papers in each of 11 scientific sections. TMS students met and exceeded all our expectations by claiming 9 overall awards.

Emma Manring received a 1st place award in a Chemical Science section for her paper “The Effectiveness of Tooth-Whitening Products”. She was also invited to present to the Virginia (Senior) Academy of Science and she “wowed” the audience with her presentation and responses to questions from the scientists in attendance.

Amanda Mier received a 2nd place award in a Chemical Science section for her paper “The Effect of Brand on the Amount of Soap Residue”

Robert Zhang received a 2nd place award in a Physical Science, Math and Engineering section for his paper “The Effect of Different Communication Systems on Power Density Emitted”

Elena Rogers received a 3rd place award in a Chemical Science section for her paper “The Effect of Paper Liners on Cupcake Height”

The five TMS students listed below received honorable mentions for their papers:

George Walker – “The Effect of Toothpaste Flavor on Time Spent Brushing Teeth”

Sara Hamilton – “The Effect of Light on the Spoil Rate of Fruit”

Steven Tate – “Energy Production from Different Fuels”

Jake Sitison – “The Effect of Surface on Kinetic Friction”

Katie Witmer – “Insulation Value of Straw Compared to Other Natural Building Materials”


 This year 7th and 8th grade science students attended the Symposium.

8th grade girls

7th Grade Girls


7th Grade Boys

Waiting to present

The presentation !!!!!!

Relief after presenting


 After a day of presentations, students enjoyed a fun night in the student center doing the Wobble and posing around the Hokie Bird.


We all got our excercise walking the VA Tech campus.

On May 22, 2013 54 TMS students presented their papers.  All students represented Tuckahoe with professionalism and class.  All participating students should receive an award for the hard work and effort put into his or her paper all year.

The following students received awards determined by the VJAS scientist judges for submitted and accepted papers and for his or her presentation and answering of questions.

Chemical Science – Nadine Lin 1st place, Steven Tate 2nd place , Andrea Eichenberger 2nd place,

Plant Sciences and Micro Biology –  Emily Alexander, Jessica Fidler, Emma Manring Josephine Tuckley – Honorable Mention.

Physical Science, Engineering and Math –  James Armstrong, Emily Duong – Honorable Mention

Animal and Human Sciences – Nick Ulrich – Honorable Mention

Human Behavior – David Hill – 2nd place, Amanda Mier – 2nd place, Hastings Crenshaw- 3rd place, Morgan Canaan – Honorable Mention, Avery Finkelson- Honorable Mention


2014 VCU

We took yellow school buses to VCU since it was so close to TMS.  Packing the numerous pieces of varying size luggage and backpacks was a huge challenge.

Arrival day on our way to dinner

The 7th graders who presented their papers.

The 8th graders who presented.

The VCU ram horns were a hit.  If you talk in one end you can be heard at the other end.  We couldn’t resist this photo opt!

Sitting under the stairs of the student union waiting to go back to the dorm to pack and leave.

After the awards the students who received awards also received color coded VJAS winner t shirts.  They are featured in the front row of this picture.

Unloading the bus was achieved by using a line of students handing off from one to the next.


On May 14, 2014, Seventy-six TMS students presented their papers at the annual Virginia Junior Academy of Science research symposium which was held this year at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Animal and Human Sciences

Honorable Mention:  Leila Shephard

Chemical Sciences

Honorable Mention:  Jarrett Gouldin, and Franklin Pugh

3rd Place:  Grace Brickley, and Anna Grace Hamson

2nd Place:  Catherine Nelli

Ecology and Earth Sciences

Honorable Mention:  Lilly Yowell

2nd Place:  Ian Street

Engineering and Math

Honorable Mention:  Andrew Logan

2nd Place:  Philip Maruri

Human Behavior

Honorable Mention:  Morgan Canaan and Scott Moss

Plant Science and Microbiology

Honorable Mention:  Reilly Towns and Jonathan Yu

2nd Place:  Nikhail Chandravel

Physical Science

Honorable Mention:  Andrew Mottley

3rd Place:  John Vithoulkas

2015 James Madison University




Mary Washington University