Science Olympiad competes at Cornell University

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For the second year in a row, two Science Olympiad teams traveled to Ithaca, N.Y. at just the beginning of the competition season. 

From Nov. 16-19, 34 students competed as teams “Dean Nolle” and “Dean Cashman” against 58 other teams from the northeast. With double the number of teams competing this year, students faced tough competition and especially in new categories. 

For instance, in the “Microbe Mission” event, junior Iris Fan and senior Zijan (Jack) Fang worked together to complete a written test about all things microbiology. “Even though ‘Microbe [Mission’] is a new event, it’s already become one of my favorites,” Fan said. “It covers such a broad range of topics from types of microscopes to industrial uses for microbes.” She also acknowledged that even though she hadn’t competed at this invitational last year, Fan could definitely feel “the competitive edge” which has only made her more inspired to put more time into preparing for future invitationals.

Other new events such as “Geologic Mapping” mainly tested students on their map-reading, map-making, geology and environmental science knowledge. “Coming to the [event] not really knowing what to expect, I wasn’t sure how to study or prepare,” senior Rachel Kludy said. “But my partner, Valerie Younes, and I worked together to split up the work to best put our separate knowledge to use. I focused on brushing up on environmental science while she honed in on geology learning.”

Aside from competition, students enjoyed touring the Cornell University campus, visiting waterfall sites and strolling through local trails while birdwatching.

Here are the top awards from the competition:

4th place, Forensics: Mia Lopez (12) & Clara Hilsman (11) 

6th place, Flight: Ty Holifield (12) & Abby Sigal (11)

5th place, Fossils: Andrew Lodin (11) & Rishi Guntipalli (12)

5th place, Scrambler: Ty Holifield (12) & Nick Diaz (11)

6th place, Scrambler: Matthew Wang (11) & Max Whitney (11)

Senior Niles Alexis balances on logs while other students hop across the water at the Seneca River. (Photo/Nick Diaz)

Before competition, students visited the Taughannock Falls State Park to catch a glimpse at the waterfall. (Photo/Nick Diaz)

Junior Nick Diaz (left) and senior Ty Holifield (right) check the integrity of their tower right before competition. Because this was the first competition of the season, they built the tower only weeks prior. (Photo/Jennifer Page)

From left to right, senior Mia Lopez, junior Clara Hilsman, sophomore Valerie Younes and junior Emily Wang refresh their Forensics knowledge the day before competition. (Photo/Jennifer Page)

From left to right, senior Rachel Kludy, junior Emily Wang, senior Yana Danzig, senior Mia Lopez and senior Shrika Kantipudi take a rest from the trails with their birdwatching-binoculars. (Photo/Jennifer Page)

At Cornell University, the team memorialized their time at Andrew Dickson’s statue at the Arts Quad. He was the “friend and counselor” of Cornell University co-founder Ezra Cornell. (Photo/Jennifer Page)

This is Lauren’s second year on the staff. She enjoys playing Papa’s Sushiria, taking naps and writing whatever’s on her mind. She’s excited to make this year the best one yet and have an awesome entertainment section.