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Press Releases

2017 Rising Scientists Awarded College Scholarships

October 3, 2017

Winners were honored at the Child Mind Institute’s annual
On the Shoulders of Giants Scientific Symposium in New York City

The Child Mind Institute presented Rising Scientist Awards to five outstanding high school students from the New York metro area who have demonstrated exceptional promise in science and a specific interest in the fields of child and adolescent mental health or pediatric neuroscience. The students received a $2000 scholarship, awarded at the On the Shoulders of Giants symposium, the nonprofit’s annual celebration of scientific achievement in child and adolescent psychiatry, psychology or developmental neuroscience. The Child Mind Institute’s partner in presenting the Rising Scientist Awards is the Advanced Science Research Center at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York (ASRC).

The 2017 Rising Scientists are:

  • Sarah Adamo, Smithtown High School West
  • Kylie Zarro, Ossining High School
  • Hawthorne Ripley, The Packer Collegiate Institute
  • Amy Shteyman, John L. Miller Great Neck North High School
  • Zara Malik, Columbia Grammar and Prep

“This is a particularly exciting year as we recognize a group of all female Rising Scientists,” said Dr. Harold S. Koplewicz, founding president of the Child Mind Institute. “Their commitment, drive and vision for the future of mental health and neuroscience, especially at such a young age, is inspiring.”

“These five young women have created workshops, founded STEM clubs, started community gardens, and launched mental health awareness initiatives, all while maintaining stellar GPAs and conducting research,” said Dr. Patrizia Casaccia, founding director of the ASRC’s Neuroscience Initiative and Einstein Professor of Biology at Hunter College. “Their motivation to conduct science in the public interest is at the heart of being a successful researcher.”

The Rising Scientist Awards were created to recognize outstanding achievement and interest in the field of research child and adolescent mental health and/or pediatric neuroscience, as evidenced by strong academic performance in science courses, participation in related extracurricular activities and proficiency in scientific research studies or independent research.

In addition to receiving the award, the winners, their parents and faculty sponsors were invited to attend a breakfast with special guest Kenneth A. Dodge, PhD, Pritzker Professor of Public Policy, Founder of the Center for Child and Family Policy, The Sanford School of Public Policy, Duke University and the 2017 Child Mind Institute Distinguished Scientist.

Nominations were reviewed by a committee of mental health experts including:

  • Harold Koplewicz, MD, founder and president of the Child Mind Institute
  • Ron Steingard, MD, associate medical director of the Child Mind Institute; Professor of Psychiatry, University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • Michael Milham, MD, PhD, Phyllis Green and Randolph Cōwen Scholar and director of the Center for the Developing Brain at the Child Mind Institute
  • Neal Ryan, MD, Scientific Research Council Member and Professor of Psychiatry at University of Pittsburgh
  • Camille Santistevan, MSW, Associate Director, Advanced Science Research Center

Dr. Steingard chaired the committee, which considered the merits of all nominations and used a point system to rate scientific achievement and to select the six winners.

The Rising Scientist Awards are granted annually. High schools in the New York metro region are invited to nominate their best 11th grade science student based on outstanding achievement in science studies, participation in related extracurricular activities and engagement in research studies or independent investigation. A preference is given to applicants who will matriculate at New York City public schools.

The 2018 Rising Scientists nominations will open March 1, 2018. Visit

About The Child Mind Institute

The Child Mind Institute is an independent nonprofit dedicated to transforming the lives of children and families struggling with mental health and learning disorders. Our teams work every day to deliver the highest standards of care, advance the science of the developing brain, and empower parents, professionals and policymakers to support children when and where they need it most. Together with our supporters, we’re helping children reach their full potential in school and in life. We share all of our resources freely and do not accept any funding from the pharmaceutical industry. Learn more at

About The Advanced Science Research Center at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York (ASRC).

The Advanced Science Research Center (ASRC) is the Graduate Center’s University-wide venture that elevates CUNY’s legacy of scientific research and education through initiatives in five distinctive, but increasingly interconnected disciplines: environmental sciences, nanoscience, neuroscience, photonics, and structural biology. The ASRC is designed to promote a unique, interdisciplinary research culture with researchers from each of the initiatives working side by side in the ASRC’s core facilities, sharing equipment that is among the most advanced available.


Child Mind Institute:
Media and Talent Relations


Adam Pockriss
Rubenstein / 212.843.8286