Science Olympiad gears up for regionals


Manal Salim

Photo by Daphne Yu
Photo by Daphne Yu
Tomorrow, Feb. 16, Science Olympiad teams will compete in the annual regional competition in Rolla, Mo. Because of the large amount of students involved in the club this year, the team split into two groups, both competing for RBHS: the Green and Gold teams.
Despite the division, Science Olympiad team members have one ultimate goal in mind. They hope to represent RBHS by placing in several events, Green team member, sophomore Saja Necibi said.
“My team members and I have been preparing for the competition to the best of our abilities. We all want to do well at the competition,” Necibi said. “Individually, I think I’ll do pretty well, hopefully. This is my fifth year of Science Olympiad, so I’m pretty experienced. I’ve also been preparing for my events a lot and taking notes.”
Necibi is not the only one who believes the RBHS Science Olympiad team will perform well at the regional competition, something the team has traditionally been able to do. Science Olympiad sponsor and coach Stephanie Harman agrees that members have been diligently preparing, and she hopes the team will come home successful.
“I consider it a successful year if we make it to state and do well,” Harman said. “Maybe not even place and get a medal, but placing in the top ten or so in some events. Maybe bring home a medal or two; that would be nice.”
According to Harman, making it to state is not usually the difficult part of the Science Olympiad competition for RBHS students, but rather doing well in the state competition is where the members are met with the most difficulty.
“We’ve made it to state pretty consistently,” Harman said, “but once we get to state, it’s a lot tougher because we go up against some private schools that have classes that they devote to their Science Olympiad.”
However, Science Olympiad team members are aware of this aspect of the competition and have been preparing frequently in order to be ready to face their contestants from various parts of the region with varying levels of intellect and ability.
“To prepare, we meet up after school,” Necibi said, “or we meet up on the weekends to practice our events and go over rules and expectations for each event.”
But the competition isn’t solely a cause of stress for RBHS team members. Rather, Necibi explains all of the leisurely benefits of Science Olympiad that she enjoys year after year.
“In the competition, I look forward to just hanging out between events, since that’s always fun. Plus, the Rolla campus has amazing food,” Necibi said. “Of course, I also really look forward to the awards ceremony at the end.”
With so much to look forward to this weekend, the Science Olympiad members face some anxiety and rivalry, according to Necibi. However, Harman isn’t at all worried or doubting of the team members’ abilities to perform to their maximum capabilities at the regional contest.
“I think we have a really good chance of making it to state,” Harman said. “There are eight teams, and the top four go to state, so it will surprise me if we don’t, just because of the caliber of students that we have on the team.”
By Manal Salim