Nnenna Ochuru (‘21)

Mexican Sage scrubs are found next to the Vivian Webb Chapel.

Fire-resistant plants

Nnenna Ochuru (‘21) was inspired by the plants Webb has around campus. She learned that they are much more than what meets the eye. Her project focused on the proteins in Mexican Sage and Black Sage. Both of these plants are present around Webb’s campus. Mexican Sage is fire-resistant while Black Sage is not. Nnenna wanted to see how scientists could modify these plants to help combat climate change. California is a state that has suffered immensely due to fires, so creating plants that can survive fires would be beneficial. “I took a lot of time choosing my afternoon activity because I wanted something I was really interested in, and I wanted to do a project that had some sort of local impact at Webb,” said Nnenna. “My favorite part of science fair was being able to find the plants, that moment when I was like yes, this is what I am going to do research on, that was fun, starting the project was very exciting.”

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