Science Olympiad advances to States


Kriste An/Chronicle

Kensuke Shimojo ’23 displays a handmade plane to fellow members of the Science Olympiad team. The team recently qualified for the Southern California State Tournament following success at regionals.

Kriste An

The Science Olympiad team qualified for the Southern California State Tournament, which will take place April 2. 

The Science Olympiad is an international competition dedicated to improving the quality of science education by introducing students to a wide variety of fields including astronomy, chemistry, physiology, machine learning and physics. The Science Olympiad is divided into several chapters around the nation, each of which hosts its own regional competitions before finalists are chosen to advance to the state level.

The team participated in the regional competition Feb. 26, competing in 26 different events. Kensuke Shimojo ’23 and Olivia Wang ’23 placed first in Bridge, Solomon Baik ’22 and Kevin Kwak ’22 played first in Run It Code It, Kwak and Shimojo placed second in Machine Learning and Grace Ma ’22 and Helena Wu ’23 placed third in Botany. Other students, including Justin Bu ’23, Weston Fox ’24, Luke Collins ’24, Elliot Lichtman ’23, Luke Madden ’24, Cherry Li ’22 and Josephine Tsai ’22 also received awards.

Wang said the team’s qualification to the state tournament is a culmination of their hard work. 

“I was elated to find out that our team had qualified to States, especially because I witnessed the hard work our team members had put in, preparing for the competition,” Wang said. “Normally, it takes a while for teams to settle in, develop and, even more, qualify to States, so I was really glad to have managed this in our second year as a team. It has been exciting bonding with members of the team and seeing them grow as they study and conduct research in their designated events.”

Ma said she enjoyed being able to compete in-person the regional competition.

“I had a blast at Regionals,” Ma said. “Being in-person simply was great. I got to spend more time with my team and socialize with underclassmen, whereas last year, I barely got to know them, being in an online setting. At States, I look forward to competing against some of the top students in California and applying the knowledge I have gained over the last couple of years in a more competitive setting.”

Madden said he is excited to participate in the upcoming competition, and he is grateful to be given the opportunity to compete against a competitive pool of students.

“I thoroughly enjoyed Regionals,” Madden said. “I think it brought out some of my favorite parts of participating in the Science Olympiad, including cooperation. I am ecstatic that we qualified for States, and I am beyond honored to be able to compete alongside such talented and qualified individuals. I think it speaks to the dedication we have put into the competition. I’m extremely excited to participate in the Southern California State Tournament, and I look forward to seeing what happens next.”