What's New at MSMS

The Brainstorm

Student Environmental Awareness League Receives $1,000 Grant for E-Waste Proposal

The Student Environmental Awareness League (SEAL), was awarded a  $1,000 grant on March 7 to support their electronic waste removal service proposal. The grant program, sponsored by the Mississippi Recycling Coalition, supports the mission of non-profit organizations that work to promote and grow recycling efforts in Mississippi.   

SEAL plans to expand their current recycling program and develop electronic waste  removal services this semester. The club’s current recycling program consists of ten recycling bins placed throughout campus to encourage both students and staff to reduce waste accumulating in local landfills. Materials that can be recycled currently include: paper, corrugated cardboard, #1 and #2 plastic bottles, and boxes of similar substance. Student volunteers and club members then compile the bins and transport them to a larger bin collected by the Columbus City Recycling Center. To apply for the Mississippi Recycling Coalition grant, SEAL students developed an idea to allow for the recycling of electronic waste on campus along with the current recyclable materials. Electronics are the fastest growing portion of the waste, so SEAL felt it was imperative incorporate the disposal of old cell phones, laptops, batteries, and chargers into the existing MSMS recycling program.  

As MSMS students live in a residential setting, SEAL aims to serve as the state’s hub for e-waste removal. Students who come from all corners of the state can bring their old or broken electronic devices back to Columbus so that they can be collected in one central location at MSMS and then disposed of properly.     

SEAL sponsor Dr. Bill Odom is a science instructor at MSMS with a passion for aiding his students and their determined efforts. 

“There are two thing we’re looking to do. The first of which is to try and educate younger students about recycling and to instill in them an environmental conscientiousness. Environmentalism is not free, and it has to live in the minds of  the people and they need to be taught it and we need to work at that. The other thing is that most places do a poor job of recycling e-waste, and I think it’s an opportunity for us to take the lead on that, hopefully statewide,” Odom commented. 

Along with serving as the statewide hub for e-waste removal, SEAL is also determined to focus on community outreach opportunities to promote a wider awareness of the dangers of waste accumulation in landfills. SEAL plans to hold informational presentations with the local Boys & Girls Club Columbus to inform and encourage students from a young age to involve their families in the effort to save the planet. 

The awarded grant amount will impact the students and staff in a manner that motivates them to continue the school’s recycling efforts and introduce new recycling methods to the community with the implementation of electronic waste removal services.


Julia MorrisonComment
MSMS Wins Big at State Beta Club Convention
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After a hiatus of the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science, Beta Club was reconstituted at the MSMS by Mia Parker, current junior. Parker, the Vice President for the State Beta Club Chapter, felt that MSMS would align well with Beta Club’s mission to, “promote the ideals of academic achievement, character, leadership and service,” as those same values are reflected in MSMS’s core ideals.

Every year, Beta Club hosts a variety of academic and talent competitions in areas such as Quiz Bowl, Creative Writing, Group Talent, Oratory, Visual and Performing Arts, Poetry, and much, much more. The Mississippi Beta Club State Convention was held in Biloxi February 18-20. Despite being an extended weekend for MSMS, several students not only participated, but received recognition at this year’s event. For a complete list of MSMS Beta Club Convention Winners, please see below:

1st Place Mathematics - Grade 11 - Victoria Gong

1st Place Fiber Arts - Likhitha Polepalli

2nd Place Science - Grade 11 - Cade Burton

2nd Place Creative Writing - Division 2 - Victoria Gong

2nd Place Onsite Acrylic Painting - Lilian Le

3rd Place Agriculture - Grade 11 - Jacob Lee

4th Place Hand-Made Jewelry - Likhitha Polepalli

4th Place Painting - Lilian Le

4th Place Poetry - Division 2 - Yousef Abu-Salah

4th Place Quiz Bowl - Samantha Anderson, Peter Nguyen, Smith Patel, Alexz Carpenter

4th Place Special Talent – Piano-- Lori Feng

5th Place Language Arts - Grade 11 - Madison Wypyski

Julia MorrisonComment
MSMS Wins Gavel at State Mock Trial Competition

For the fifth straight year, the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science Mock Trial team received recognition at the State Mock Trial Competition. This year, MSMS Team One placed 3rd for their legislative prowess and took home the celebratory gravel. 

The students listed below devoted countless hours to preparation for the state competition and worked tirelessly to memorize their opening and closing statements, questions, and the rules of evidence. For the past six months, the Mock Trial team, under District Attorney Scott Colom's leadership, has refined their cases, rehearsed their parts, and perfected the art of negotiation and persuasion.  Please congratulate them on a job well done!

Aurelia Caine

Campbell Rolph

Hayden Stokley

Kelsey Hollingsworth

Kennedy Laporte 

Lauren Mitchell

Mariana Strawn

Mariat Thankachan

Mia Parker 

Peter Nguyen 

Powers Lamb

Reyan Grimes

Samantha Anderson

Ta'Kiya Moore

Taniya Bland 

Tija Johnson

Trinity Cannon

Victoria Gong

Julia MorrisonComment
MSMS Hosts Annual Mathematics Tournament
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The Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science (MSMS) hosted the annual Mathematics Tournament for all Mississippi high school students on Thursday, March 1 at Trotter Convention Center. Beginning at 8:00AM, hundreds of high school students, representing 26 different schools from all across the state flocked to Columbus to participate in this incredible tournament, sponsored by the MSMS branch of Mu Alpha Theta, a national high school mathematics honor society. 

In total, roughly 650 students participated in this year’s Mathematics Tournament. The event featured ciphering, written tests, a mini-interschool competition, and a potpourri round. There was also a special 100 Question Challenge that teams could try their hand at. 

There are five levels of competition: Algebra I, Geometry, Algebra II, Trigonometry, and Calculus. The event concluded with an awards ceremony to honor those individual contributors and teams placing in each category.  Schools from all across the state won awards and recognition for their mathematics prowess. 

Julia MorrisonComment
MSMS Celebrates Black History Month
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On Thursday, March 1, the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science's Black Student Alliance hosted an engaging celebration of Black History Month. 

Black History Month was originally conceived of in 1926 by noted African American historian and scholar, Carter G. Woodson. Woodson went on to establish the "Association for the Study of Negro Life and Culture," with the intent to make black history accessible to all Americans. He believed that by spreading awareness about the incredible accomplishments and contributions of African Americans, he could shift racial relations in the United States. Black History Month became a month-long national celebration in 1976. Since the mid-70s, schools, universities, community groups, and nonprofit organizations have worked together to ensure that African American history and culture remain at the forefront of American discourse.  

The Black Student Association put together a riveting event that featured poetry readings of works of art by famous black authors, as well as readings and reenactments that celebrated key events in African American history. The event also included music by MSMS's own Voices in Harmony, a Black Lives Matter tribute, and a powerful dance number. 

A special thank you to Dr. Ty Crook who serves as the faculty sponsor for the Black Student Association and was instrumental in overseeing this year's Black History Month celebration. 

Julia MorrisonComment