2017 Science Olympiad at Dartmouth

The School of Graduate and Advanced Studies at Dartmouth, in collaboration with Lebanon High School, is proud to be hosting the first ever Science Olympiad invitational tournament on campus.

On Saturday, December 16, twenty teams of middle and high school students from around Northern New England will come to Dartmouth to participate in over twenty different STEM challenges, competing to medal in their individual events and vying for the coveted team tournament trophies. There will be events in all branches of science, including materials chemistry, physics and astronomy, engineering, and earth sciences for a total of 23 events held in the Life Sciences Building and other spaces on campus.

Thanks to generous funding from the Byrne Foundation, the efforts of numerous volunteers to write tests, supervise events, and usher teams on the day, and the dedication of Lebanon High School teacher, John Tietjen, the first invitational at Dartmouth promises to be an exciting event. John explains that his objective is to engage students in Northern New England in challenging and inspiring STEM activities, and to develop the collaborative capacity of the regional STEM community.

Graduate students from across the programs are all contributing to the event, brought together by a passion for STEM K-12 engagement, as well as a desire to give back to the Science Olympiad community. Rebekah Guevara, PhD candidate in the Molecular and Cellular Biology program, says she signed up to volunteer because of her passion for science outreach, as well as her experiences as a contestant in Science Olympiad events during grade school.

Alumni connections also came into play. Chemical engineer Todd Lloyd (PhD-Thayer, ‘05), supervisor for the thermodynamics event, says, “I was flattered to be asked to participate, and the Science Olympiad sounds like a great way to stay engaged with the next generation of engineers!”

Undergraduate Christopher Kartsonis ’21, a Science Olympiad alum himself, commented: "I'm an undergrad freshman '21 at Dartmouth College, possibly majoring in Environmental Engineering. I was a member of the Harriton High School team for the past four years and have some really amazing memories of those four years. That's why I would like to be an event supervisor at this Invitational - to give back to this nationwide community."

Dartmouth students contacted some of their peers in the Science Olympiad community, including Joyce Gu, a student at Duke University who then worked with two of her peers at Duke to write the test for the Fermi questions event. Others who were contacted and offered to help write tests were Royce Lee, Yale University ‘21, and Sang-o Park, Harvard University ‘21. They wrote: "We are a group of Science Olympiad alumni from Harriton High School who have recently graduated and are currently attending college. Since Science Olympiad was a huge part of our high school experience, we would love to be able to give back and continue to participate in it by writing and providing tests for your invitational."

Dean of the School of Graduate Studies, Jon Kull, will preside over the award ceremony on the day. Dean Kull says, “I’m really happy that Dartmouth can host this event and that Dartmouth graduate students can help out as future scientists demonstrate their mastery of scientific concepts and principles. It is critical for our country to train the next generation of scientists, as they will go on to make discoveries and create inventions that we can only dream of today.”

Contact [email protected] for more information on how to get involved.