Bethlehem shines at Science Olympiad
Every year since 1985, high school students from around the country gather to compete in a challenge based science competition, Science Olympiad. The nationwide program has multiple levels, and the State of Pennsylvania has a large state competition every year. The 2018 competition was held at Kutztown University on March 15.
The day long competition put 28 schools from eastern Pennsylvania in a grueling contest covering 23 science related topics. Students from Liberty, Freedom, and Bethlehem Catholic spent weeks preparing for a chance to win. The core focus of the Olympiad is STEM – science, technology, engineering and math.
The team from Liberty contained 13 students; Vivek Adury, Nicole Alhov, Everst Byrne, Alan Guo, Grace Haas, Raj Kundu, Lucy Kitch-Peck, Elizabeth Lee, Liam Murray, Mike Nah, Man Nguyen, Stephen Trempel and Julia Zheng.
The team excelled in Disease Detectives (microbiology) and material sciences, taking second and fourth respectively. Julia, Grace, Lucy and Vivek all placed in their events, and the entire team celebrated a successful event with doughnuts when they returned to school. Tara Richards, science department chair at Liberty said after the event, “I am very proud of the team. These students are SO involved at LHS and they worked hard at a variety of science areas of study and represented our school well.”
Bethlehem Catholic also had students in attendance at the event. Students Antonio Diaz and Vivi Hoang placed third for the trial event of “What’s Your Number” and Marc Cai and Zoe Zhang placed fourth in “Mission Possible.” The team also scored six additional top 10 finishes. Biology instructor Carole Reightler, who helped prepare the students, and also supervised at the event, commented, “We continue to develop STEM curriculum at Becahi and it pays off when we go to events like Science Olympiad.”
Freedom had eight students attend the event, led by president senior Ryan Brown. The students competed in 10 events, and placed in the top 10 in four. Senior Matthew Sabatino and junior Quentin Jimenez placed third in Fermi Question, in which students provide answers to a series of science related questions that seek fast, rough estimates of a quantity which is either difficult or impossible to measure directly. Senior Matthew We also placed a respectable ninth in Towers and 10th in Disease Detectives. All of the students did a fantastic job of representing Bethlehem and their schools.