NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. -- New Rochelle High School's Science Olympiad team participated in the Lower Hudson Valley Regional Science Olympiad Competition on Saturday, Feb. 11, receiving high scores in several categories.
The squad competed in all of the 23 events at the regional Science Olympiad against 45 teams from Westchester and Rockland. The competition was held at Byram Hills High School in Armonk.
"I am so proud and grateful for the dedication and success of the team," said Rekha Liveris, the team's coach. "New Rochelle High School's advanced science and mathematics curricula have provided these students with the skills to meet the demands of the rigorous expectations at the Science Olympiad Competition."
Seniors Jacob Gruza and Jeffrey Tallan placed first in the Hovercraft event, in which students constructed a self-propelled air-levitated vehicle made of balsam wood with up to two battery-powered motors. Each battery turned one propeller to levitate and move the vehicle around a track.
Daniella Basave and Wendy Yu, also seniors, placed second in the Microbe Mission category. This was a written test, in which students were asked to answer questions, solve problems and analyze data pertaining to different types of microbes.
Most of the questions emphasized process skills, such as data interpretation from graphs and tables; use of a dichotomous key; drawing conclusions; calculations; metric conversions; determination of organism size; inferences and making observations, according to a release from the City School District of New Rochelle.
Gruza and senior James Hidalgo placed second in the Optics event, in which students participated in an activity involving positioning mirrors to direct a laser beam toward a target, and were tested on their knowledge of geometric and physical optics.
Tallan and Tristan Awayan, a junior, were ranked fourth in the Wind Power event. Students created a device to capture wind power using a propeller, pinwheel and rotor attached to a compact disc.
During the competition, students were asked questions regarding the design, construction and operation of their project, the release said.
Gruza and Ricky Kauffman, another senior, placed fourth in the Write It/Do It event. In this category, one team member wrote a description (in 25 minutes) of an object and instructions on how to build it. The other student constructed the object (within 20 minutes) from the description.
New Rochelle High placed 17th overall in the competition.