Minnetonka's Jacob Neis Earns STEM Achievement Award

“Pick subjects that truly interest you, start putting in the study early, and go into the test with a positive attitude," Neis advises.

Jacob Neis, a senior at Minnetonka High School, and Emily Xie, a senior at Eden Prairie High School, were recently named the Minnesota state winners of the 2012-13 Siemens Awards for Advanced Placement, a signature program of the Siemens Foundation administered by the College Board. 

Check out this Patch feature story on Jacob Neis, published in November.

The awards recognize the nation’s top achievers in Advanced Placement Program (AP) courses in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) with a $2,000 college scholarship to one male and one female student in each state. 

Two national winners (one male and one female) are also recognized, each receiving a $5,000 scholarship. This year, 101 high school students in all 50 states, 93 seniors and 8 juniors, were honored.

“We commend this year’s Siemens Awards for Advanced Placement winners on their hard work and dedication to STEM subjects, and we thank the teachers, parents and schools who supported their scholarship,” said Jeniffer Harper-Taylor, president of the Siemens Foundation.


Total AP Courses Taken to Date (all disciplines including STEM):  12 

Favorite AP Class:  Chemistry

Advice to other AP students:  “Pick subjects that truly interest you, start putting in the study early, and go into the test with a positive attitude.”

Proudest Accomplishments:  Qualified for USA Mathematics Olympiad (2012), USA Chemistry Olympiad (2011) and USA Physics Olympiad (2012) 

Plans for College Study:  Pure or applied sciences

Anticipated Career:  Scientific or engineering research 

Favorite nonacademic pursuits: Playing clarinet in the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies; volunteering at public library


Total AP Courses Taken to Date (all disciplines including STEM):  20 

Favorite AP Class:  Calculus

Advice to other AP students:  “Take time to understand fundamental themes and concepts of the courses that you are taking (AP or not). Then relate the rest of your learning back to those themes and concepts.”

Proudest Accomplishments: State AP Scholar 2012; participating in ground-breaking algal biofuels research at the University of Minnesota 

Plans for College Study:  Biology

Anticipated Career:  Founder of a biotechnology start-up 

Favorite nonacademic pursuits:  Blogging on her website, emilyxie.com; mentoring other students in AP coursework; competing in Business Professionals of America; volunteering at Children’s Hospital of Minnesota 

The Siemens Awards for Advanced Placement

Established in 1998, the Siemens Awards for Advanced Placement (http://www.siemens-foundation.org/en/advanced_placement.htm) awards $2,000 college scholarships to students from each of the 50 states who have earned the greatest number of scores of 5 on exams in the following AP courses: Biology, Calculus BC, Chemistry, Computer Science A, Environmental Science, Statistics, Physics C Mechanics and Physics C Electricity and Magnetism. 

The Siemens Foundation

The Siemens Foundation provides more than $7 million annually in support of educational initiatives in the areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in the United States. Its signature programs include the Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology, Siemens Awards for Advanced Placement, and The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge, which encourages K-12 students to develop innovative green solutions for environmental issues. For more information, visit www.siemens-foundation.org

The College Board

The College Board is a mission-driven not-for-profit organization that connects students to college success and opportunity. Founded in 1900, the College Board was created to expand access to higher education. Today, the membership association is made up of more than 6,000 of the world’s leading educational institutions and is dedicated to promoting excellence and equity in education. For further information, visit www.collegeboard.org.


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