Eight local high school chemistry students will participate in the U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad (USNCO) competition at The University of Tampa on Monday, April 23, from 8 a.m.–3 p.m. These students were the top scorers out of more than 200 students from 20 public and private high schools in Tampa and the surrounding areas who participated in the recent local American Chemical Society (ACS) Chemathon examination.
The students selected are Joseph Flahavan, Pine View School; Sean Williams, Plant High School; Tianlin Ji, King High School; Maxwell Frankel, Plant High School; William Kirby, Newsome High School; Anuj Som, Palm Harbor University High School; Zackary Rosso, Cambridge Christian School; and Omer Amir, East Lake High School.
The students will take an exam that may qualify them to become members of the USNCO team that will compete in the 50th International Chemistry Olympiad (IChO) in Bratislava Slovakia, and Prague, Czech Republic, July 19–29.
The IChO involves a series of theoretical exams, laboratory exercises and other activities aimed at identifying the best chemistry students from participating nations from around the world. The U.S. has participated in this event since 1984. In 2017, the U.S. team won four gold medals.
The eight local nominees are among over 1,200 nationwide that will take a national qualifying exam April 17–23 to select finalists. Twenty students will be identified and will undergo intensive training June 10–25 at the U.S. Air Force Academy, CO. The top four will be chosen to represent the U.S. in the 50th IChO competition.
The USNCO is an annual event coordinated by the UT Department of Chemistry, Biochemistry and Physics and the ACS Tampa Bay local section. They are done in partnership with the Florida Department of Education through the support of the science supervisors of Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco, Hernando, Manatee and Sarasota County Schools.
For more information, contact Susan Del Valle, assistant professor of chemistry, biochemistry and physics, at [email protected]. The media is welcome to attend. The lab portion, which offers the best opportunity for photos, will be held from 1:30–3 p.m. in the Organic Chemistry Lab in the Science Annex.