Science Olympiad is a national extracurricular for K-12 students that increases participation in the sciences through exciting competitions. Students compete in 23 different "events" that introduce them to specialized disciplines, e.g. "Disease Detectives" for epidemiology, "Fossils" to paleontology. My own participation in Science Olympiad, especially in the "Fossils" event, led me to pursue a career in paleontology. Because I would not have been substantively introduced to this field in regular middle and high school classes, I feel compelled to give back to the Science Olympiad community so that others might also be inspired to follow careers in STEM.
To stay involved, I have founded the organizations below, and also serve as co-chair of the Alumni Task Force that works with the National Science Olympiad organization to leverage alumni involvement.
During my senior year at Cornell, I co-founded the student organization Science Olympiad at Cornell (the third in the country) and directed the first SciOly@Cornell Invitational. We were able to share our passion for science with ~500 high school students! This invitational is still on-going -- spread the word! Cornell will also serve as the host site for the 2019 Nationals tournament thanks to the hard work of the current members there!
I started a Science Olympiad chapter at the University of Chicago in 2016. Our goal is to increase scientific participation in the surrounding communities through the Science Olympiad program. I served as tournament director for our first invitational on Jan 20, 2018 which invited over 600 students from the region to the UChicago campus. We have also volunteered at local, state, and national tournaments, and hosted multiple workshops for Chicago Public Schools. We have been invited to the Clinton Global Initiative University conference at the University of Chicago (October 2018) to present our Commitment to Action of starting an Elementary Science Olympiad program in the Chicago Public Schools.
Beyond drawing terrible Paleo Doodles and cartoons on our lab whiteboard, I help merge art and science through co-organizing an annual Art & Science Expo. In this event, we showcase artwork that researchers at UChicago produce during their work or inspired by their work. Check out our Facebook page for more info!