Fifteen Upper School students competed in the MIT Invitational Science Olympiad Tournament in Cambridge on Saturday, January 23rd. Many nationally ranked and regional teams competed in 23 science, engineering, lab, and technology events throughout the day. Waynflete came in 29th out of 52 overall, but 3rd in New England, finishing behind two strong Massachusetts teams (Acton-Boxborough and Newton North). We beat all other New England teams, including Waterville Senior High School, likely our closest rival in the upcoming State Tournament at the end of March.
The team was coached by science teachers Wendy Curtis and Carol Titterton and captained by seniors Esme Benson, Elly Shivel and Gail Johnson. Other seniors were Christian Rowe, Henry Johannen, Peter Michalakes and James Bigbee. Juniors were Willson Moore, Emily Tabb, Tim Clifford, Althea Sellers, Elisabeth Lualdi and Grace Bramley-Simmons. Sophomores Luna Soley and Nick Hagler rounded out the team.
Tournament successes included strong performances by Emily and Willson’s airplane and Nick and Peter’s electric vehicle. Other particularly impressive results came in Hydrogeology (Althea and Grace), Astronomy (Peter and Esme), Invasive Species (Gail and Elly), Anatomy and Physiology (Elly and Peter), and Write It Do It (Christian and Henry).
Highlights outside of the competition itself included an incredible keynote address from Dr. Pardis Sabeti, a medical geneticist and infectious disease researcher (Ebola, lassa virus) from Harvard University who was named one of the TIME 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2015. Her moving personal story was as inspiring as her professional and scholarly accomplishments were impressive. Finally, there were adventures in and around Cambridge including some of us being liberated from an elevator by firefighters (no one was in any danger), and a couple of exciting mile-long hikes through blizzard conditions in search of food at the Cheesecake Factory.
To learn a bit more about Dr. Sabeti: http://www.orthop.washington.edu/orthodev/drupal/sites/default/files/files/Car%20crash%20leaves%20Ebola%20researcher%20with%20own%20struggle%20%7C%20Boston%20Herald.pdf