Fleetwood Excels at Science Olympiad

Posted on March 5, 2014 by

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Science Olympiad has been around for 30 years and is still going strong. It has 7,000 teams in all 50 states, with 16,000 schools involved in Science Olympiad throughout the country. Each team is allowed to bring 15 members from grades 6-12, but some schools have 75 members on their team.

Each year, a portion of the events are rotated to reflect the ever-changing nature of genetics, earth science, chemistry, anatomy, physics, geology, mechanical engineering, and technology. There are about 280 events nationwide.

The first Science Olympiad competition was held on 23 November 1974 at St. Andrews Presbyterian College in Laurinburg North Carolina. Dr. Donald Barnes and Dr. David Wetmore were the founders. Fifteen schools from North and South Carolina competed in these first events.

The first national event was held at Michigan State University in 1985. It was attended by sixty teams from seventeen states. Four schools from Pennsylvania have won nationals.

The winner is decided by the team’s overall score. The team with the lowest score wins except in some competitions. Some competition points get awarded to the place; the higher the place, the more points awarded.

One method for a tie break is that the school with the most first place medals wins the competition.

There are 23 teams in each division, and there are 3 divisions: Division A (K-6), Division B (6-9), and Division C (9-12).

“Isaac Cook and I got second in our event. Our event is ‘Mission Possible.’  I like to compete, and working with other students makes it enjoyable,” junior Brendan Homan said.

This is Homan’s  first year in Science Olympiad.

This year at Kutztown University, Fleetwood’s team finished first at counties. Science teacher Todd Driesbach is in his seventh year as head coach. This is a team-based event, but students can get individual awards. The next competition is on 20 March at KU; it is the regional competition.

“It’s my third year. I really like it, but it’s very demanding. I got first in scrambler and fifth at bungee drop,” senior Joe Torres said.

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