BURBANK—Woodbury University in Burbank, California was the site again for the 12th Science Olympiad on Sunday March 10, 2013. This annual event organized by the Science Olympiad Committee of the Armenian Engineers and Scientists of America (AESA) brings together young Armenian students from different middle and high schools to showcase their completed science projects.
Total of 90 students from 6th through 12th grades with 73 projects had the opportunity to participate in this year’s competition. These students were representing nine schools at this event: AGBU Manoogian-Demirdjian, Chaminade High School, Charlotte and Elise Merdinian Armenian Evangelical, Holy Martyrs Ferrahian, Rose and Alex Pilibos School, St. Gregory Alfred and Marguerite Hovsepian, TCA Arshag Dickranian, Toll Middle School, and Vahan Anoush Chamlian.
The project entries were divided into four categories: junior life sciences, junior physical sciences, senior life sciences and senior physical sciences. These projects were judged by eighteen volunteer scientists and engineers based on creativity, scientific thought and data analysis, thoroughness, presentation, as well as clarity.
Aside from showcasing their science projects, the Science Olympiad Committee this year had chosen a wonderful activity to promote team work and principles of engineering. The students were divided into groups of five, each group was handed a bag of materials which included 30 sheets of paper, one cardboard (30″ x 12″), four pencils, one marble, one roll of tape, a pair of scissors, and one ruler (12″). From these materials, they were asked to construct a roller coaster that had a loop and a funnel. They were given one hour to construct and then the roller coasters were judged on creativity, design, and length. A team of five students won based on the complexity of their roller coaster and the length of time it took the marble to get down the track. Each was awarded a movie ticket gift certificate.
The award ceremony started by a motivating presentation by Dr. Beatrisa Boyadzhyan, a research scientist at Quest Diagnostics who talked about DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) molecule with a fascinating video about DNA’s transcription and translation and how DNA may become the hard drive of the future, opening a new way of information data storage and recovery.
After congratulatory remarks by AESA President, Dr. Mardy Kazarians, Jenik Gharabegian, Committee Chairwoman welcomed everyone and praised all the participating students for their hard work and dedication in completing their science projects, the participating schools, principals, vice principals, teachers and parents who had been instrumental in students taking part in this science competition.
Dr. Marina Guevrekian was praised for being instrumental in increasing the Science Olympiad endowment fund by $10,000 by being named the recipient winner of Johnson & Johnson 2012 Volunteer Recognition Grant Program out of 150 worldwide Johnson & Johnson employee applicants.
Anna Patatanyan of St. Gregory Alfred and Marguerite Hovsepian School was the recipient of the teacher award this year. The recipient of the school award was Elise Merdinian Armenian Evangelical School, represented by their science teacher Mr. Fredrick Sayadian.
“We would like to acknowledge the Science Olympiad Committee members, Emma Abrahamian, Arpi Arman, Sarkis Barkhoudarian, Mariyetta Madatyan, Louisa Manasyan, Talin Petrosian, and Arsine Vardanyan for their dedication and devotion,” said AESA President, Dr. Mardy Kazarians. “In addition, we commend all the sponsors and the scientists and engineers who had visited the schools for mentoring the students at the schools’ science fairs along with the ones who judged the projects for the participating students,” concluded Kazarians.
Here is the list of student award winners:
The AESA encourages all Armenian students from 6th through 12th grades whether in public or private schools to strongly consider participating in the next 2014 AESA Science Olympiad. For further information please contact at [email protected] or Twitter – @AESA. Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/groups/45401957991/
Established in 1983 in Glendale, California, AESA is a non-partisan and non-sectarian philanthropic organization focused primarily on addressing the professional, technical and scientific needs of fellow Armenian engineers, scientists, industrialists and architects throughout the world. For more information, check AESA’s website at www.aesa.org, or contact (818)547-3372, e-mail: [email protected]