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Burgum Congratulates National Youth Science Camp Selectees
North Dakota Ag Connection - 05/17/2018

Gov. Doug Burgum Wednesday expressed his congratulations to Kathryn Slavick of Mandan High School and Benjamin Berdal of May-Port CG High School, who have been selected to attend the 2018 National Youth Science Camp.

At the invitation of West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice, Slavick and Berdal will participate as delegates to the Camp near Bartow, W.Va., from June 27 to July 21. Selected as alternates were Tanner Aanstad of Edmore, Karley Warner of West Fargo, Matthew Jorgenson of Williston and Erin McCrossin of Williston.

Slavick is ranked at the top of her class for taking the most difficult and advanced science and math courses her school has to offer. With a goal to be a veterinarian, she is taking three science courses her senior year and has taken multiple dual credit college courses during her high school years. She also took multiple veterinary science courses online through the North Dakota Center for Distance Education. Recognized as one of Mandan High School's Most Outstanding Science Students, Slavick has won at regional and state science fairs and National FFA Agri-Science Fairs and received Academic All-Conference Awards. She is a U.S. Presidential Scholar nominee for Mandan High School and is involved in the National Honor Society, Student Council, Science Club, Congressional Debate, MHS Peer Tutor, BisMan Student Chamber of Commerce and the North Dakota Stockmen's Association Veterinary Mentorship Program. She also volunteers for Dakota Zoo and "The Braces Project."

Berdal is one of the most outstanding leaders in his school, at work and in the community. He has always been passionate about science and has an interest in the medical field. In addition to taking all the college-prep science and math courses offered at his high school, he has been involved in science- and health-related extracurricular activities and leadership roles. He is on the North Dakota Academic All-State Team; has placed six times at the Future Business Leaders of America national competitive events; was chosen as a Bismarck Police Department Meritorious Citizen; is involved in Student Council, Boys State and Future Career and Community Leaders of America; and has twice presented his research findings on water at the North Dakota Water Quality Monitoring Conference. He is the aquatics expert on the school's Envirothon team and a state Envirothon Aquatics champion, as well as being captain of the River Watch and wrestling team. He completed a certified nursing assistant course and works as a transport aide for Luther Memorial Home, is a bank teller and helps out with the Food Pantry, Park Board, Riverside Church and the Elderly Neighbor Helping Hand Program.

"We are excited for Kathryn and Benjamin for being selected as delegates to the National Youth Science Camp," Burgum said. "North Dakota will be well-represented by these exceptional student leaders who inspire us with their tireless dedication to the advancement of science, their schools and their communities."

Established in 1963, the National Youth Science Camp is a residential science education program for young STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) enthusiasts the summer after they graduate from high school. The Camp welcomes delegates from each state to exchange ideas with leading scientists and professionals from the academic, government and corporate worlds. Delegates also present seminars covering their own areas of research and interest. The Camp's diverse academic program is complemented by an outdoor recreation program.

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