On Saturday the heat of serious competition will not only be found in PyeongChang, Korea. Area high school students will be pushing their mental skills and strengths to the max as Texas A&M University at Galveston holds its 10th annual regional Science Olympiad tournament.
The Science Olympiad was started by a grassroots assembly of science teachers and has now become a national event. 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, creating a technologically-literate workforce and providing recognition for outstanding achievement by both students and teachers.
The Texas A&M Galveston regional tournament hosts middle and high school competitions that follow the format of popular board games, TV shows and athletic games. These challenging and motivational events are well balanced between the various science and engineering disciplines of biology, earth science, chemistry, physics, computers and technology. There is also a balance between events requiring knowledge of facts, concepts, processes, skills and science applications.
Each school brings a team of up to 15 students for the competition to advance to the state tournament held at Texas A&M University in College Station in April with winning teams from state advancing to the national competition.
“The Science Olympiad is a great way to celebrate science and engineering in a friendly competition between some of the brightest students in middle and high schools,” said Dr. Melanie Moser, the Galveston event’s regional director and instructional professor, Department of Marine Sciences at Texas A&M Galveston. “Many volunteers from Texas A&M Galveston and our community make this event possible. Everyone has fun!”
The first Science Olympiad Tournament was hosted by Michigan State University in May, 1985, with 17 states participating. Currently, there are nearly 7,800 secondary schools from 50 states participating, with an additional 10,000 or more elementary schools holding Science Olympiad tournaments or hands-on events.
Texas A&M Galveston held their first regional tournament in 2009. In the years since, Texas A&M Galveston has hosted thousands of students and their parents who have participated or served as the cheering section.