Competing in multiple events from tower building to creating makeshift battery buggies, some of the best and brightest students from across the region participated in South Texas College’s 13th annual Regional Science Olympiad, on February 23.

The event, organized by the Division of Math and Science at STC, consisted of interscholastic competitions for students in grades 6-12 centered around Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) events.

The Olympiad was comprised of 15 events in Division B which included middle school competitors, and 14 events in Division C which included high school competitors. Medals were awarded to the top three students in each event, with the top two teams overall in each division advancing to the state competition at Texas A&M College Station in April.

For Division B, first place went to Fossum Middle School in McAllen, and second and third place went to Alamo Heights Middle School.

Seventh grade science teacher and Science Olympiad coach for Fossum Middle School, Danielle Zamora expressed her excitement for the win at the event.

“Our Fossum Science Olympiad team members were excited and happy to receive 1st place and the Spirit Award at the Science Olympiad Regional Competition,” Zamora said. “We put a lot of effort and time towards doing our best for this competition, and were so grateful that all our hard work paid off.”

In the high school division, first place went to Lamar High School in McAllen, second place went to Alamo Heights High School in San Antonio, and third place went to Tomball High School.

Other school districts from the Valley who competed included PSJA ISD, San Benito ISD, Brownsville ISD, and Mercedes ISD.

Participating schools from across the state included Alamo Heights from San Antonio, Brazoswood High School from Clute, near Houston, and Tomball High School.

“This event is important because students tend to get more focused and interested in sciences when they do hands-on events like this,” said Dr. Ludivina Avila, Division of Math and Science instructor at STC and event organizer. “They are able to apply what they learned in class and show their creativity.”

Science Olympiad is a nonprofit organization developed over 30 years ago to improve the quality of science education for students. The event is a way to provide recognition of outstanding achievement in science education by both students and teachers from all 50 states competing at the regional, state, and national level.