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Colorado students go head to head in Science Bowl

Dozens of teams from across the state competed in the competition at Dakota Ridge High School


After a full day of competition in the state Science Bowl March 3, a team from Fort Collins High School was named the champion after outscoring Fairview High School in Boulder, in a rapid-fire final, answering questions in physics, math, biology, energy, chemistry, and earth and space sciences.

Cherry Creek High School in Greenwood Village rounded out the top finishers, earning the third-place trophy.

A total of 41 teams from 25 schools throughout the state battled it out at the daylong competition at Dakota Ridge High School in south Jefferson County.

Other schools that excelled during the morning competitions and advanced to the afternoon double-elimination contests were: Cheyenne Mountain High School in Colorado Springs, Fossil Ridge High School in Fort Collins, Highlands Ranch High School, Liberty Common High School in Fort Collins, Loveland High School, Niwot High School, Peak to Peak Charter School in Lafayette, Poudre High School in Fort Collins, Ridgeview Classical School in Fort Collins and Rock Canyon High School in Highlands Ranch.

Viyan Giri, a first-year competitor and 10th-grade student at Rock Canyon, said the competition was sharp but fun.

"I'm liking the biology questions in particular this year," he said. "I'm taking a biotechnology class at my school and the questions are falling hand-in-hand and helping me out.

Giri said he hopes that having a competitive mindset is important to his future career.

For Lakewood High School senior Wesley Linder, the Science Bowl is a way to show of his brain.

"I think it's really exciting to come here and know it's up to your knowledge of the content - what has been given to you in class, but also the extra stuff you study on your own," Linder said, adding that the physics and chemistry questions are where he shines. "It's fun to show that off and compete with other people interested in the same stuff."

The Department of Energy created the National Science Bowl in 1991 to encourage students to excel in mathematics and science and to pursue careers in these fields.

More than 275,000 students have participated in the National Science Bowl throughout its history, and it is one of the nation's largest science competitions. The DOE's Golden Field Office once again served as one of the major sponsors of this year's event, along with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. The lab's involvement is part of its continuing commitment to workforce development through ongoing STEM education programming.

"The National Renewable Energy Laboratory has many programs that are interested in grooming the generation that might become our next scientists and researchers at our lab," said Linda Lung, manager of workforce development and education programs at NREL and regional coordinator for the Colorado Science Bowl. "What we think is so fun is these kids get to go in and get acknowledged for all their academic achievements."

Lung said one of her favorites things to see when visiting the schools is the Science Bowl trophy mixed in with athletic trophies.

"The kids take a lot of pride in this," she said. "This is a great competition to say it is cool to be smart."


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