WASHINGTON, May 27, 2009 — Twenty of the nation's top high school chemistry students from 12 states will compete for a place on the team representing the United States at the 41st annual International Chemistry Olympiad from July 18-27, 2009, in Cambridge, England. The American Chemical Society (ACS) sponsors the U.S. team.
Eighteen boys and two girls won the final 20 spots from a competitive pool of more than 11,000 high school students nationwide. Four contestants will be chosen for the final team and two students will serve as alternates at the end of the summer training camp held June 3-18 at the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo. The four-member U.S. team will compete against teams from more than 65 other countries.
“The ACS is proud of its Olympiad contenders who are representative of the best chemistry students in this country,” said ACS President Thomas H. Lane, Ph.D., a strong supporter of science education. “The Olympiad program is a way to stimulate interests in science among thousands of students. ACS and its more than 154,000 members are dedicated to engaging students in the wonders of chemistry and to the development of our next generation of scientific leaders,” Lane said.
The 20 U.S. finalists who will participate in this year's study camp and compete for positions on the Olympiad team are:
San Diego, Calif.
West Hills, Calif.
Oak Park, Ill.
West Lafayette, Ind.
Monmouth Junction, N.J.
Arcadia High School
Chamblee High School
Barrington High School
Naperville Central High School
Oak Park/River Forest High School
W.H. Harrison High School
Acton-Boxborough Regional High School
St. Mark's School
St. Mark’s School
River Hill High School
N.C. School of Science/Mathematics
South Brunswick High School
Westfield High School
Vestal High School
Bellaire High School
Thomas Jefferson Sci. & Tech.
The U.S. team has been a strong competitor at the international event. The 2008 team won one silver and three bronze medals. In 1999 and 2000, the U.S. team won the gold medal.
The 2009 competitors are mentored by chemistry teachers Linda Wood, Lowndes High School, Valdosta, Ga.; Jack Kotz, State University of New York, Oneonta, N.Y.; Kristin Fletcher, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.; and Andrew Freddo, 2006 silver medal winner of the International Chemistry Olympiad and now a student at the California Institute of Technology.
The International Chemistry Olympiad began with Czechoslovakia, Poland and Hungary in 1968. Other Western and European countries joined later, with the United States first participating in 1984.
Principal funding for the U.S. Chemistry Olympiad team is through the ACS’ Othmer Olympiad Endowment with additional support from the Air Force Academy; Advanced Chemistry Development; BrandTech Scientific, Inc.; Carolina Biological Supply Company; Fisher Scientific; Flinn Scientific, Inc.; Holt McDougal/Cengage Learning; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; McGraw-Hill Companies; Merck Publishing Group; Pearson Prentice Hall; Texas Instruments, Inc.; and Sigma Aldrich Co.