Staples Student Selected For Competitive Summer Internship At MIT

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Staples High School student Zach Effman, right, is heading to MIT this summer for an internship. He is with Dr. Nicholas Morgan, a Staples Science teacher, left.
Staples High School student Zach Effman, right, is heading to MIT this summer for an internship. He is with Dr. Nicholas Morgan, a Staples Science teacher, left. Photo Credit: Courtesy Staples High School

WESTPORT, Conn. -- Staples High School student Zach Effman is heading to MIT this summer for an internship. 

Effman is one of 80 students selected worldwide for the competitive summer internship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Research Science Institute.

"As a Staples High School freshman, Zach Effman heard Dr. Nicholas Morgan talk about the Authentic Science Research course he co-teaches," school officials said. "Over the next three years, Zach learned, he could hone in on an important topic; discover how to truly research it, then follow it through the many inevitable highs and lows of hands-on science."

When he was a sophomore, Effman decided to look at mathematical chaos in solar systems and he wrote code that numerically simulates how solar systems evolve over time, school officials said. 

“Zach is a great person to work with,” said Morgan. “He’s dedicated, focused and creative.”

As part of the MIT program, Effman will spend six weeks working one-on-one with a professor, developing and carrying out an intense research project. 

Effman is the third Staples student selected for the MIT program, representatives said. In 2010, Yuri Lenskiy worked on theoretical aspects of quantum computers and Tessa Green studied nuclear reactor designs. Both students are MIT undergraduates, representatives said.

Morgan said Effman’s computational astronomy experiment is “trying to answer how stable planetary orbits are from gravitational perturbations from other planets. He’s modeling some of the many star systems recently discovered by astronomers, and looking at how stable they will be millions of years in the future,” according to the release. 

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