COLUMBUS — The Northmont Middle School and High School Science Olympiad teams both placed within the top teams in the region during Regional Competitions in March; and both went on to participate in the Science Olympiad State Championship Tournament last Saturday, April 1 at The Ohio State University in Columbus.
At the State Tournament, the middle school finished seventeenth out of the 40 middle school teams in competition; and the high school finished 32nd out of 40.
There are 310 teams, made up of over 4,600 students, which compete across Ohio during the Science Olympiad season, which starts in September. Of those 310 teams, only 40 in each division, high school or middle school, qualify for the State Tournament. The top two high school and middle school teams in the state advance to the National Tournament, which will be held this year on May 19 and 20 on the campus of Wright State University.
The winning teams at the Middle School level were first place Tower Heights Middle School, from Centerville; and second place Solon Middle School, from outside of Cleveland. The winning schools at the High School level were first place Mentor High School, from the Cleveland area; and second place Solon High School, also from the Cleveland area.
From each of the Northmont schools, 15 team members competed in a variety of science-based events. Team members built rockets or towers, ran vehicles or gliders, took tests, worked experiments, and used deductive reasoning. At the State Tournament, 23 events were held, plus one trial event. Medals were awarded to finishers up to sixth place.
“This was a great weekend at the State Tournament,” said Jim Witters, Northmont Middle School head coach. “I am very proud of how well the competition went; and proud of each and every one of the students for the time and dedication and commitment that they have put in through this entire season!”
Northmont High School brought home two event medals, going to James Bousquette and Jessica Saini for a fifth place finish in “Wind Power;” and again to Bousquette and partner Ian Underburger for a sixth place finish in “Towers.” At the Middle School level, three event medals were won. The top individual winners were Garret Pearce and Zoe Wilson, who finished fifth in “Food Science;” along with Christian Hinegardner and Liam Zechar, who also placed fifth in “Scrambler.” In addition, Jocelynn Asbra and Allayna Rose placed sixth in “Towers.”
Science Olympiad is an extra-curricular program open to students from sixth through twelfth grade. Students attend meetings twice per week to study the science behind their events. Ohio has been part of the National Science Olympiad program since its inception, and state participation ranks in the top seven of the 48 states currently involved in this program.
The Northmont High School Science Olympiad team is partially funded through support of the Northmont Education Foundation and the Northmont Rotary Club. The Northmont Division B Teams receive generous support from several local business donors, including Bob Evans, MainSource Bank, the Northmont Rotary Club, Ratliff Metal Spinning, and Vancon General Contractor. Students interested in any of the STEM programs are encouraged to contact their school office for information regarding how to join the Science Olympiad teams next year.
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