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University to host Science Olympiad

Thursday, Jan. 8, 2009, 8:20 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. McDonnell Hall, Jadwin Hall and Jadwin Gymnasium

On Thursday, Jan. 8, the University will host a regional tournament of the New Jersey Science Olympiad, an event that will test the science and engineering knowledge of more than 800 middle school and high school students.

The tournament, which will take place in McDonnell Hall, Jadwin Hall and Jadwin Gymnasium from 8:20 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., will challenge teams of students with quizzes and tasks developed by Princeton scientists and engineers.

The Science Olympiad will feature more than 30 events that draw on a range of technical disciplines, including biology, earth science, chemistry, physics and robotics. "The Biology Blitz," for instance, is a trivia game that will test students' knowledge of living organisms, while "The Scrambler" requires teams to build a small vehicle that uses the energy generated by a falling mass to transport a fragile cargo -- eggs -- along a straight track.

The New Jersey Science Olympiad, which started in 1993, is expected to attract teams from 60 schools around the state. Princeton faculty, staff and students and industry volunteers from the Research and Development Council of New Jersey contribute their time and expertise to plan and run the event, which is led by the University's Office of Research and Project Administration.

The top teams from the Princeton event qualify for the state championships held at Middlesex County College in Edison in March, which in turn serves as a qualifier for the National Tournament in Augusta, Ga., in mid-May.

The tournament is hosted by the University and sponsored by the New Jersey Science Teachers Association, the New Jersey Science Education Leadership Association and the Research and Development Council of New Jersey.

Representatives of the news media who are interested in attending or want more information should contact Chris Emery in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences communications office at (609) 258-4597 or cemery@princeton.edu.

The snow date for the event is Friday, Jan. 9.

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