Science & Technology

100 NJ Students Named to Prestige STEM Program

Governor’s STEM Scholars to Showcase New Jersey’s STEM Economy to Students from Across the Garden State

The Governor’s STEM Scholars announced their 2021-2022 class, made up of 100 high school and college STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) students from across the Garden State.

The Governor’s STEM Scholars is a public-private partnership between the Research & Development Council of New Jersey, the Office of the Governor, the New Jersey Department of Education, the New Jersey Secretary of Higher Education, and public and private research institutions based in New Jersey.

The Governor’s STEM Scholars believes that maintaining a pipeline of talented individuals is critical to maintaining excellence in innovation. In recognition of this and to counter the state’s brain drain, the Governor’s STEM Scholars was created to engage the next generation of research and innovation leaders in the state’s vast STEM economy early.

“By 2027, STEM jobs will grow by nine percent in New Jersey. The Governor’s STEM Scholars introduces the state’s best and brightest STEM students to the STEM companies, professionals, research, and opportunities available in the Garden State. Through the Governor’s STEM Scholars, we are ensuring our state’s talented students stay in New Jersey to fill these roles, securing our academic and workforce pipeline for the future,” said Anthony Cicatiello, President of the Research & Development Council of New Jersey.

The Governor’s STEM Scholars introduces New Jersey’s high achieving high school and college students to industry, academic, and government research in New Jersey, to establish a profound relationship between these students, STEM, and New Jersey. By making genuine connections between the Scholars and STEM representatives from the research community, we are keeping these STEM students here to become New Jersey’s future STEM professionals.

This year marks the eighth class of Scholars and the most diverse cohort in program history. Sixty-six percent of Scholars are female and 34 percent male. 82 percent of the Scholars identify as a Person of Color, with 32 percent with a racial identity underrepresented in STEM fields, specifically Black, Latinx or Indigenous. Twenty-seven percent of the Scholars are or will be first-generation college students. The Scholars come from across the state and represent 20 of New Jersey counties.

The Scholars were selected from a pool of more than 600 applicants. Scholars must have at least a 3.5 GPA, be high school sophomores through doctorial-level at a New Jersey-based high school or university, and demonstrate a passion for STEM.

“From the lightbulb to the submarine, the transistor to the one-shot COVID-19 vaccine, New Jersey has an illustrious history of research and innovation led by its deep pool of talented STEM professionals,” said Alise Roderer, Director of the Governor’s STEM Scholars. “Generations from now, it is these 100 future scientists, inventors and innovators who we will admire and study for their contributions to society. The Governor’s STEM Scholars is thrilled to welcome them to our 2021-2022 class and to support them in their STEM journeys here in New Jersey.”

Throughout the academic year, Scholars will participate in four conferences to explore different aspects of New Jersey’s STEM economy focusing on STEM in government, academia, and industry.  During the 2021-2022 programmatic year, these conferences will be held at New Jersey Institute of Technology, Rowan University, Stevens Institute of Technology, and Kean University. Scholars will participate in a research project, led by undergraduate and graduate-level Scholars, that advances the work of New Jersey’s research community. Additionally, Scholars will tour New Jersey STEM facilities and laboratories and network with STEM professionals to gain a 360° view of STEM opportunities throughout the state.

The Governor’s STEM Scholars is sponsored by Bristol Myers Squibb, Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson, Novartis, and the PSEG Foundation.

The 2021-2022 Governor’s STEM Scholars are:

Jacquelyn Anderson, Ocean County

Natasha Antin, Middlesex County

Nikhil Arayath, Burlington County

Ananya Balaji, Mercer County

Arnuv Batra, Middlesex County

Shrutee Sangeeta Behera, Hudson County

Sophia Benavente-Sayani, Hudson County

Cassidy Brennan, Monmouth County

Sofia Capitillo-Villasmil, Gloucester County

Willy Chan, Morris County

Yuhua Chen, Somerset County

Shriya Dani, Bergen County

Shivam Dave, Bergen County

Sophia Dengler, Monmouth County

Daisy Dong, Somerset County

Gabriella Dong, Mercer County

Shubhranshu Dutta, Hunterdon County

Kamila Esquivel*, Hudson County

Fadi Farag, Mercer County

Cameron Farid, Passaic County

Vincent Fox, Gloucester County

Nona Fulmore Harris, Passaic County

Emma Fylstra, Cumberland County

Ramrithvik Gadhamsetty, Middlesex County

Sumana Gadiraju*, Bergen County

Isha Gangavaram, Somerset County

Xavier Garay*, Somerset County

Aleksander Garbuz, Monmouth County

Moho Goswami, Middlesex County

Amanda Guan, Monmouth County

Hailey Haglid, Bergen County

Leonard Jasper, Essex County

Alexandre Jean, Essex County

Ella Joasil, Middlesex County

Zain Kamal*, Bergen County

Tamara Kasikovic, Middlesex County

Madeline Keel, Middlesex County

Annette Kersten, Monmouth County

Isa Khan, Morris County

Sanya Kohli, Middlesex County

Shricharan Kulavanikerpuram Subramaniam*, Middlesex County

Siya Kulkarni, Morris County

Darshan Lakshminarayanan, Middlesex County

William Lee, Bergen County

Aliza Lopez, Middlesex County

Andric Lu, Morris County

Elaina Mann, Essex County

Emily Mawhinney, Cape May County

Deborah McDougall, Essex County

Sweksha Mehta, Union County

Antonio Mena*, Union County

Gianna Meurer, Bergen County

Ankit Mithbavkar, Hudson County

Jiya Mody, Somerset County

Lesslie Montiel*, Camden County

Habiba Morsy*, Bergen County

Sydney Munn, Middlesex County

JéVanni Napoleon, Essex County

Abigail Negron, Hudson County

Achunike Okafor, Essex County

Anita Osuri, Monmouth County

Bhavini Pandey, Middlesex County

Hannah Park, Bergen County

Anika Parthiban, Somerset County

Diya Patel, Middlesex County

Krisha Patel, Atlantic County

Sade Peña, Hudson County

Justine Prophete, Monmouth County

Ariyana Rahman, Middlesex County

Janani Rajan, Mercer County

Shreshth Rajan, Monmouth County

Aileen Rangel, Hudson County

Mihir Rao, Morris County

Claudia Reines, Union County

Nayeli Rojas, Ocean County

Siddharth Satish, Mercer County

Julia Schanen, Essex County

Christopher Sebastian, Morris County

Ella-Maria Sharkey, Morris County

Ananya Shrivastava, Morris County

Isabela Simpson, Atlantic County

Kayla Soto, Middlesex County

Diana Stinkova, Union County

Lisa Stites*, Morris County

Prasiddha Sudhakar*, Middlesex County

Fhameda Sultan, Passaic County

Shivam Syal, Middlesex County

Senay Tesfamichael*, Gloucester County

Mitchell Tillman*, Hudson County

Erika Toliao, Bergen County

Devin Torres, Burlington County

Peter Tran*, Atlantic County

Nicolle Vilca*, Hudson County

Nathaniel Vinoya*, Essex County

Alvin Wu, Middlesex County

Audrey Yan, Monmouth County

June Yin, Somerset County

Sarah Zampino, Salem County

Daniel Zhang, Somerset County

Helen Zheng, Somerset County

*denotes college-level Scholar

Read more about the 2021-2022 Governor’s STEM Scholars at

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