Blaine teen wins science fair

Published on Wed, Mar 12, 2014 by Quinn Welsch

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Whether he’s restoring salmon habitat or looking for new ways to use energy, Blaine High School senior David Shapiro is determined to make a difference on the environment. 

Shapiro, 17, was named the overall winner of the 2014 Whatcom County Science Fair on March 8 at St. Paul’s Academy in 
Bellingham. His project, titled “Oriented Fluorophore Cascades for High Efficiency Luminescent Solar Concentrators,” measured which color and concentration of polymer material can store the most solar energy. 

For Shapiro, the science project is about much more than an award. Shapiro’s goal is to work for an oil company as a chemical engineer and help shift the nation’s reliance on fossil fuels to more sustainable energy sources. First, Shapiro is hoping to either attend Washington State University or University of Washington following his high school graduation.

Shapiro has been making waves in the community for quite some time. He was awarded his Eagle Scout by the Boy Scouts of America last June after he organized work parties and totaled more than 200 volunteer hours to help restore trails at Squalicum Creek in Bellingham. Shapiro planted more than 50 native plants and built two new benches at the site as well.

When he’s not winning science awards or restoring the environment, Shapiro competes as a Borderite athlete. He has run on the school’s track team and has recently started playing soccer.