CLARION – Six hundred high school students will travel to Clarion University on March 18, for the Pennsylvania Northwest Regional Science Olympiad. The Northwest Regional is one of six in Pennsylvania from which winning teams advance to state competition.
Science Olympiad is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of K-12 science education, increasing male, female and minority interest in science and providing recognition for outstanding achievement by both students and teachers. Participating in Science Olympiad tournaments, incorporating Science Olympiad into classroom curriculum, and attending teacher-training institutes achieve these goals.
The competition, coordinated by Dr. Bruce Smith, professor of science education at Clarion University, is divided into two categories, Division C for high school students and division B for junior high school students. Twenty-three teams in Division C and 16 teams in Division B are entered.
The opening ceremony begins at 8:30 a.m. in Tippin Gymnasium. The events will take place from 9 a.m.-2:50 p.m. in various locations throughout the Clarion University campus. An awards and closing ceremony begins at 3:30 p.m. in Tippin Gymnasium. The competition and awards ceremonies are open to the public.
The students will compete in 23 events. The top four teams in each division advance to face teams from the other five regions at the state competition at Juniata College. The winners of the state competition qualify for the national Science Olympiad at Wichita State University, Kansas.
High schools competing in Division C include: Brookville, Cameron County, Clarion Area, DuBois Area, Ford City, Franklin, Indiana, Kane, Kittanning, Laurel, Maplewood, Neshannock, North Clarion, North East, Oil City, Penns Manor, Penns Valley, Redbank Valley, Ridgway, Seneca, State College, Venango Catholic and Warren.
Junior high schools competing in Division B include: Brookville, Clarion Area, DuBois, Indiana, Kane, Laurel, Maplewood, Neshannock, New Castle Christian Academy, North Clarion, North East, Oil City, Park Forest, Penns Valley, Redbank Valley and Wattsburg.
Events in Division C include: astronomy, boomilever, cell biology, chemistry lab, circuit lab, disease detectives, ecology, electric vehicle, experimental design, Fermi questions, five star science, food science, forensics, health science, herpetology, oceanography, physics lab, remote sensing, robot ramble, rocks and minerals, sounds of music, Wright stuff and write it do it.
Events in Division B include: amphibians/reptiles, anatomy, balloon launch glider, bio-process lab, crave the wave, disease detectives, ecology, food science, meteorology, metric mastery, oceanography, reach for the stars, road scholar, robo-cross, rocks and minerals, science crime busters, science word, scrambler, simple machines, tower building, trajectory and write it do it.
Nearly 5,500 middle school and high schools participate in Science Olympiad; with up to 30 participating students per school, approximately 165,000 students take part. Additionally, 9,000 elementary school participants, coaches, teachers, parents, volunteers, experts, scientists, business leaders, and all of the people at the host sites amount to more than two million people involved in the event each year.
Individual medals, as well as championship trophies for each division, are awarded at tournaments. In addition, cash and tuition scholarships have been awarded in amounts exceeding $1.5 million.
Science Olympiad events meet National Science Standards set by the National Research Council. Teachers searching for curriculum resources, which illustrate standards in action, have found success with the Science Olympiad. The event highlights many of the Teaching Standards, Assessment Standards, Program Standards and Science Education System Standards.