Marshall students place 1, 2, 3

Eighth-grader Alec Malcangio won the regional Science Championship in Los Angeles. (photo by Michael Malcangio)

Marshall students place 1, 2, 3

Hard work, preparation and brain power lead Marshall Middle School participants to win first, second and third place in the regional Science Championship.

The competition was held Feb. 19 in Los Angeles. Students qualified by taking a quiz locally on the same day and time, as all hopeful participants across the country. Of the 25 Marshall Middle School students who took the quiz, nine students qualified for the regional competition.

The regional competition contained questions from the categories of physics, chemistry, biology, computers and math. Students competed individually in the buzzer-style competition with others of their own grade or grade group.

Cheryl Converse-Rath, advisor to both the Science Championship and the Academic Quiz Bowl for Marshall Middle School, said she discovered the competition for the first time this year. Converse-Rath said she established a weekly practice schedule and used the provided practice packets to prepare the students for the competition. The results speak for themselves.

In the eighth-grade group, Alec Malcangio, Shreya Goel and Shabdika Gubba placed first, second and third. Notably, sixth grader Anya Krolik won first place in her group as well.

Eighth grade first place winner Alec Malcangio said he felt most prepared by the practice sessions held by Converse-Rath that gave him a good sense of both the types of questions that would be asked and how in-depth to expect the questions to go.

“I felt fairly confident going through the competition. I was asked a number of more traditional science questions, namely in physics and geology, that were heavily covered in the prep-packets,” Malcangio said.

Despite feeling prepared, Malcangio said he had no expectation of winning the competition.

“I really didn’t expect to win. When I finished first, I was completely surprised and I was in shock for a while,” he said.

Converse-Rath was thrilled with the students’ remarkable finish and plans to spread the word and promote the event even more for next year’s competition.

“I think the students’ finish is fantastic. How exciting is it that in the first year we competed we have five students who qualified for the national championship?” she said.

The National Science Championship takes place in Atlanta Georgia in June. While Malcangio qualified for the national championship, he said he won’t be attending because it takes place during his eighth-grade graduation.

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