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Columbia Science Olympiad teamColumbia’s Science Olympiad team finished another incredible season, placing 15th at the National Tournament held at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio this past weekend. The tournament includes the top 60 teams from across the country who have earned an invitation to attend based on their performances at state level competitions.

Columbia, which made its fourth consecutive trip to Nationals, maintained a steady and consistent performance throughout the event, with members striving to achieve the best scores possible to assist the entire team.

Columbia earned two national medals; a 4th place finish in the Game On event for Sarina Xin and Peter Sergay, and a 4th place finish in the Write It Do It event for Haley D’Angelo and Allie Radin.

Top 10 Finishes:
4th Game On:
Sarina Xin and Peter Sergay
4th Write It Do It:
Haley D’Angelo and Allie Radin
7th Disease Detectives:
 Yang Yang and Abby Radin
8th Rocks and Minerals: Elizabeth Vlieg and Sydney Sill

Top 15 Finishes:
12th Dynamic Planet:
Katie Grifferty and Fritz Howard
14th Remote Sensing: William Grasso and Sydney Sill
14th Forensics: Yang Yang and Natasha Montiel
15th Hovercraft: Sam Koblensky and Peter Sergay
15th Optics: William Grasso and Sam Koblensky
16th Invasive Species: Elizabeth Vlieg and Allie Radin
17th Wind Power: Katie Grifferty and Sam Koblensky
18th Robot Arm: Fritz Howard and Neil Laya
20th Electric Vehicle: Neil Laya and Abby Radin

Top 25 Finishes:
21st Microbe Mission:
Yang Yang and Abby Radin
22nd Anatomy and Physiology:
Sarina Xin and Allie Radin
22nd Towers: Albert Chang and Sarina Xin
23rd Hydrogeology: Katie Grifferty and Natasha Montiel

Science Olympiad requires students to sign a pledge before a competition, this includes a promise to put in one’s best effort, and to compete with integrity, respect and sportsmanship. These promises were evident in the amazing effort the team put in together at Nationals. They worked to do the best for the team and extended their kindness and cooperation to work with members of the other teams from New York State.

At the awards ceremony, Haley D’Angelo and Allie Radin who had captured a fourth place medal, were among the first to congratulate their competitors from the Fayetteville Manlius team as they collected their gold medal.

Science Olympiad also provides students the opportunity to learn life skills such as collaboration, the ability to overcome obstacles and to problem solve and think on one’s feet – to find an immediate solution to a problem, sometimes with only seconds to think. These are among the most important things that students learn from their Science Olympiad experience. It is these skills that will help to lay the foundation for their futures in the fields of science, math and engineering. Columbia’s team knows the necessity of working together and that it’s their combined efforts and attitudes that make the team successful.

While competing against the best in the nation, students learn the importance of giving their all under very stressful situations. Understanding this, they can easily cheer on those who have overcome the same obstacles. Good sportsmanship is easy to achieve when you understand how difficult the competition truly is. The student pledge ends with the statement “My actions will exemplify the proud spirit of my school, team and state.”  Columbia’s team lived up to this pledge and so much more.