Science Olympiad attends Murrieta Valley Invitational

Walnut Science Olympiad was represented by two teams that placed third and fourth overall Saturday, Jan. 9 at the Murrieta Valley High School Invitational.

The invitational allows students to test their skills before the regional competition in February. To accommodate the members, the club registered two teams, with each composed of 15 members. Groups of two or three worked together as partners in each of the 23 events.

“We want to give a chance to all the club members to compete [in Invitationals]. [It] is a practice competition that gives a really good opportunity for all members in the club to experience the competition,” Science Olympiad co-captain junior Ayesha Ng said.

Walnut faced 13 other teams; in each event, they competed against 10-30 other students.

“I got first place in [the event of] Hydrogeology, but I didn’t place especially well for my other events. That motivates me to do study harder, so I look forward to [managing] my time well in regionals,” cabinet member junior Alice Mo said.

Some events allow students to bring note sheets with diagrams and charts. Students are given general event parameters to study from and can include their prior research in the notes.

“[The competitions] are mostly about researching, studying and memorizing. We get a binder full of notes, but that doesn’t mean you’ll do well. You need to know the material as well,” Mo said. “In Science Olympiad, I learned not only knowledge, skills and time management but also how to work with others to do well.”

The Los Angeles County regional competition will be Saturday, Feb. 27 at Occidental College. The top 10 teams will advance to the Southern California state competition, where they will compete against schools from other regions, including San Diego, Orange County and the Inland Empire.

“Even though we competed in the invitationals, the regional competition is usually the one in which our knowledge and skills are put to the test against other really competitive schools in the area,” senior Dalton Trinh said. “We’re using the energy from [our] nervousness [and] excitement to motivate ourselves to do the best we can.”

By Phillip Leung, Staff writer

Photo courtesy of Annie Li