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GSMST’S Science Olympiad: A Competition for the Curious

The Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science and Technology’s Science Olympiad team competed recently at Forsyth Central High School. Science Olympiad is a science-based team competition where students study scientific sub-fields for months, preparing to compete in special events designed to test their knowledge and experience.

Science Olympiad gives students the opportunity to learn and interact with material they would never encounter in a typical classroom. This is the real benefit of the organization– providing a way for students to pursue areas of science, technology, engineering and math that interest them.

The Science Olympiad team is led by four teachers — Mrs. Patricia Caldwell, Mr. Bradley Kastner, Mr. Tom Wellnitz and Mr. Kenny. When asked about Science Olympiad and how a student should approach Science Olympiad, Mrs. Caldwell replied, “It’s a competition for the curious. You must have an inquiring mind and that’s what makes Science Olympiad so great.”

This passion is also evident in the team members. Martin Still, a two-year member of Science Olympiad, when asked why he enjoys the competition responded, “I am very interested in researching chemistry and physical science as well as designing experiments. Science Olympiad allows me to dig into these interests and apply them practically.”

During the competition, GSMST’s fossils team won first place. Fossils is an event that combines underlying geological knowledge with the ability to identify species of various fossilized organisms. GSMST also placed second in herpetology, another sub-field of biology focused on identification of reptiles and amphibians.

Overall, there were 23 events all involving specific fields of science and engineering all of which are very challenging. The GSMST team, however, is up to the challenge, especially since they will also compete on Sat., Oct. 20, at the University of Georgia in preparation for future regional and state competitions.