As a student in the UWindsor Faculty of Education, Stephanie Palazzolo (BSc 2013, B.Ed 2014, M.Ed 2016) helped to organize the annual Science Olympiad. Now a teacher at Essex District High School, she was excited to bring a team of its students to participate in the competition Thursday.
“I’m very passionate about Science Olympiad,” Palazzolo said. “The activities are even better than when I was running it.”
About 40 teams of secondary students from 22 local schools tested their knowledge, teamwork, and critical thinking skills in hands-on, “minds-on” events organized by faculty, staff, and student volunteers from the Faculty of Science.
“This was our biggest one yet,” said organizer Michelle Bondy, experiential learning specialist in the Faculty of Science. “It goes to show the value that educators place on their students getting opportunities to apply and develop their knowledge.”
Abby DiLaudo, a Grade 12 student at Leamington’s Cardinal Carter Catholic Secondary School, said a “love for science” drew her to the event.
“Our teachers know who is keen and are sure to let us know about these kinds of opportunities,” she said as the day wound down.
By contrast, Lyra Sheldon, a senior at École secondaire catholique E.J. Lajeunesse, says she’s “not a science person,” but enjoyed Science Olympiad nonetheless.
“It was fun bonding with my friends and seeing the facilities,” Sheldon said. “I learned some things as well.”
Winners get a boost toward their post-secondary education, with members of the top-finishing team receiving scholarships worth $1,000 each to study science at the University of Windsor.