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Clarkson University to Host Regional Science Olympiad Feb. 2

Elastic airplane gliders, robots, and a host of science-oriented high school students will soon converge on Clarkson University for the day. Clarkson will once again host the Adirondack Regional Science Olympiad on February 2.

Twelve teams from nine schools will compete in 20 different events. Local competitors include Madrid-Waddington, Potsdam and Norwood-Norfolk high schools. Teams will also travel from as far away as Plattsburgh and Carthage for the event.

The winning team will advance to the New York State Science Olympiad at Monroe-Woodbury High School in Central Valley, about an hour north of New York City.

The Olympiad, which runs from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., will include a series of academic competitions in astronomy, anatomy and physiology, forestry, and thermodynamics and other subjects in the morning.

The public is invited to attend a series of building competitions in the afternoon.

The elastic glider competition from noon to 1 p.m. and 1 to 2 p.m. in the Student Center Multi-purpose Rooms will have students flying model airplanes to determine who can keep theirs aloft the longest.

The “mag lev” competition from 1 to 2 and 2 to 3 p.m. in Science Center 160 will determine which team can power a vehicle the furthest along a magnetic track.

The “robot arm” competition from 1 to 2 p.m. and 2 to 3 p.m. in the CAMP atrium will require students to control robots and have them complete a series of challenges

The Olympiad inspires high school students to consider a career in the science, engineering, technology and mathematics (STEM) fields, according to Clarkson Physics Professor Michael Ramsdell, the event organizer. Several Clarkson students who once participated in the Olympiad as high school students now volunteer at the event, Ramsdell said.

“You want to inspire students to learn. You provide opportunities that inspire interest in the STEM disciplines and at the same time prepare them academically,” Ramsdell said. “You provide opportunities for kids in high school that might want to go into science and engineering, and they see they actually can do it.”

Clarkson University launches leaders into the global economy. One in five alumni already leads as a CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. Located just outside the Adirondack Park in Potsdam, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university for undergraduates with select graduate programs in signature areas of academic excellence directed toward the world’s pressing issues. Through 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, sciences and health sciences, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo, and connect discovery and engineering innovation with enterprise.

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or]

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