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After students presented their experiments at a virtual venue of the 2021 Citrus Regional Science and Engineering Fair, the Citrus County School District announced its winners.

Pupils in grades six through 12 completed their projects earlier this school year for fairs held at each of the county’s middle and high schools — private and public. Traditionally, the fair is held in person at the Citrus County Auditorium in Inverness.

“I am so proud of these students for participating in the science fair, going above and beyond their normal academic curriculum,” said Dr. Mary “Beth” Branch, teacher on special assignment for science. “Both teachers and students worked very hard to navigate the challenges of a virtual platform.”

According to the district, Lecanto High and Crystal River Middle were the county’s overall school winners.

Lorelei Mohammadbhoy, of Lecanto High School, won the Ronald J. Worthington Award and $500 for Scientific Excellence for her project, “Microplastics Still Do Not Promote Gender Equality,” recognizing her project as an excellent representation of scientific research.

Lecanto High School student Nicole Moran won the Tim Herndon Plumbing, Innovating the Future Award for her project, “Prosthetics for Poverty Affected, 2.0 Model,” a $1,000 prize given to a project demonstrating excellence in engineering and hard work.

Visit to see a complete list of category winners.

For more than four years, the Science and Engineering Fair has been sponsored by Dr. Robert Brocket and Dr. Rushi Patel, of Citrus Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Center, along with the Citrus County Education Foundation, Duke Energy and the Rotary Clubs of Citrus County.

According to the school district, 20 local students will participate at the end of March in the Virtual State Science and Engineering Fair.

Contact Chronicle reporter Buster Thompson at 352-564-2916, or visit to see more of his stories.