Every child. Thinking critically. Solving problems.


SARSEF Fair award winners have been announced!

See the winner list
Published Tuesday March 21, 2023

Press Release: Arizona Students Win More Than $100,000 at the 2023 SARSEF Regional Science and Engineering Fair!

(Tucson, AZ)

In March, SARSEF held their 68th Annual Regional Science and Engineering Fair and hosted a Community STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) Expo. The fair provided students the opportunity to be recognized and rewarded for their work in science and engineering. 

Over 20 exhibitors joined the STEM Expo, igniting passion for science through hands-on experiences taught by real-world professionals such as: Center for Negative Carbon Emissions – ASU, Bisbee Science Lab, and the Arizona Science Center.

The SARSEF Fair highlighted the work of 5,949 students and 1,560 projects from over 140 schools, pre-kindergarten through high school, from all over Arizona. Over $100,000 in checks, scholarships, prizes, and trips were given out to students as well as teachers who went above and beyond to support their students’ work. 

“My participation in the SARSEF Fair helped me to realize that research effort has a true influence that goes beyond making scientific developments. Behind each project, students spent months planning and working diligently for the goal of improving the community by sharing their passion for science with others,” shared SARSEF Winner Andrea Hernandez from Rio Rico High School, “I did not understand how much I had evolved personally and professionally until I presented alongside more than a thousand other projects. I feel like a real scientist!”

Andrea Hernandez, Grade 12, Rio Rico High School

257 volunteer judges determined the grand awards, volunteering over 2,570 hours of their time. Judges reviewed projects and interviewed students to determine who will win a prize. 

Valeria Toscano Pasos, who attends Flowing Wells High School, examined the gut-to-brain signaling pathway associated with maintenance of energy homeostasis and nutrient-induced satiation. She was excited to have had the opportunity to present her research and is excited to continue and explore her scientific journey. 

 “SARSEF changed my perspective on science fairs. Seeing the plethora of projects and everyone’s dedication to their projects made it feel less competitive and more community oriented. I hope that my achievements in both SARSEF Fair and JSHS (Junior Science and Humanities Symposium) inspire Flowing Wells students to engage in science and formulate their own projects.”

Valeria Toscano Pasos, Grade 12, Flowing Wells High School

Over 400 Sponsored Awards were given to students. These awards are contributed by individuals or organizations within the community and nationally, supporting and encouraging students to become future leaders and believe in themselves. For example, Jasper Byerley, who attends Doolen Middle School, won the Coding with Commitment Sponsored Award given by Broadcom Foundation. The award included public recognition by the foundation, a $250 gift certificate, and a Raspberry Pi Foundation Official RP 400 Personal Computer Kit. 

Nine students will continue on to compete at the Regeneron International Science and Engineering fair (ISEF) in Dallas, Texas: Andrea Romero (Harvest Preparatory Academy), Ashley Valencia (Harvest Preparatory Academy), Estefany Regalado and Jorge Covarrubias, (Harvest Preparatory Academy), Hannah Feinberg (BASIS Tucson North), Jimena Uribe Lin (Harvest Preparatory Academy), Jimmy Kwon (BASIS Tucson North), Keona Kuo (University High School), and Serena Rezende Tsao (University High School).

Visit the Virtual Fair and review projects in the exhibit hall:

View the 2022 Awards List:


SARSEF was formed in 1955 in an effort to increase student interest in the field of science. The mission of SARSEF is to engage Arizona’s Pre-K-12 grade students in critical thinking and problem-solving skills as they participate in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) through inquiry-based learning and research.

SARSEF accomplishes this mission through a variety of programming including a high school mentoring program, the STAR Lab, SARSEF Fair Week, educational outreach programs with an emphasis on underrepresented populations in the sciences, teacher professional development, ACES Camp for Middle School girls, Racing the Sun, and Arizona STEM Adventure.

To learn more about SARSEF programs and how students, teachers, and families can get involved, visit

Media Contact:

Yvonne Pysher, Director of Marketing and Communications


(520) 525-5230