The first Biology Olympiad for Shell was held on the 6th December and was a great success. Four of us attended the competition, looking forward to participating in such a wonderful event. We left the College at 5:30am, along with 2 accompanying staff: Mr Dempster and Ms T-V, arriving at Epsom College for the start of the event at 9.30am.
In the science labs, we were greeted by Epsom’s teachers, who talked us through our experiment. We were then split into 10 different groups of mixed teams, consisting of pupils from seven different schools. Working with strangers, we had to do our best to get to know them, as the practical required teamwork and cooperation. The experiment required us to test urine samples and decide what kind of diseases each ‘patient’ had, according to the components found. We had to plan out our investigation and consider all of the safety aspects to do with our methods in the first session. We were assessed on how safely we worked, our teamwork skills, method writing and communication.
After break, we then conducted the practical investigation, using different chemical tests to try and determine what each urine sample consisted of. This concluded the practical aspect of the day. Following lunch, we then did a general science quiz in the computer labs. Our scores were added to those from the morning session, which would be calculated together to give an overall result.
At the end of the day, we all gathered in the lab for the certificate presentations. Ethan Choi did very well to achieve a gold, whilst Axel Lim, Kaitlyn Strika and Sophia Riaz achieved silver. We had a great day and hope that next year the College can send another team of keen Shell pupils to this worthwhile event.
By Kaitlyn Strika, Sophia Riaz and Ethan Choi