Three SPARK students at a science fair

SPARK students present their projects at a science fair.

Science Fairs

Students in the SPARK Research Mentorship Program prepare research projects to enter regional, state and international science fairs and competitions.

Participation is required in:

  • Either the Northeast Florida Regional Science and Engineering Fair (NEFRSEF) or the St. Johns County Secondary STEM Fair.
  • Students who attend a school within the Duval County Public Schools (DCPS) district must also submit their project to the DCPS Secondary Science Fair, which is typically held each January.

If projects are selected in the required fairs, students are expected to compete in state and international science fairs, such as:

  • Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF). This is the world's largest international pre-college STEM fair.
  • State Science and Engineering Fair (SSEF) of Florida. Science project exhibits are prepared by aspiring scientists and engineers in grades 6 through 12 for this three-day fair.

Other science fairs SPARK scholars participate in include:

  • BioGENEius Challenges. This fair provides high school students with the opportunity to compete and be recognized for outstanding research in biotechnology.
  • Florida Junior Academy of Science. Affiliated with the Florida Academy of Sciences, this is the Florida chapter of the American Junior Academy of Science (AJAS), the only U.S. honor society recognizing America's premier high school students for outstanding scientific research.
  • Florida Junior Science, Engineering, and Humanities Symposium (JSEHS). The University of Florida's JSEHS helps develop interest and ability in science and provides recognition and prestige for students who demonstrate aptitude for scientific studies.
  • Junior Science and Humanities Symposium (JSHS). Designed to challenge STEM students grades 9 to12, individual students compete for scholarships at JSHS and experience hands-on workshops, panel discussions, career exploration, research lab visits and other networking opportunities.
  • Regeneron Science Talent Search (Regeneron STS). Considered the oldest and most prestigious U.S. science competition for high school seniors, Regeneron STS recognizes and empowers promising young scientists to develop ideas that could solve society's most urgent challenges.
  • Student Research Showcase. The Sigma Xi Student Research Showcase is an annual celebration of student scholarship and research excellence. The virtual conference invites high school, undergraduate, and graduate students across disciplines to share their research and connect with professionals and peers.