KINGSTON, R.I. — June 11, 2018 — Three hundred students from nine Rhode Island high schools competed at the University of Rhode Island’s 85th annual Chemistry Contest. The contest is split into individual and team competitions, and students are entered in two divisions, depending on the number of years of high school chemistry instruction.
In the Division I team competition, for students who have had no more than one year of chemistry that is not Advanced Placement, Bishop Hendricken High School in Warwick won first place. North Smithfield high school was second, and Barrington High School was third.
In the Division II team competition, for students who have had more than one year of chemistry instruction or AP, Barrington High School won first place. Bishop Hendricken won second, and Cranston West High School won third.
In the Division I individual competition, Helen Pan, of Rocky Hill School in East Greenwich, took the top spot. In second place, was Logan Cuthill, Bishop Hendricken, and Eric Pugliese of North Smithfield High School won third.
In the Division II individual competition, Alexy Carolan, of Barrington High School, was first. Bishop Hendricken’s Patrick Faherty and Nathan Williams placed second and third respectively.
Contestants had one hour to answer 45 chemistry questions, which were graded and evaluated by URI graduate students in the chemistry program. After the exam period, students had the opportunity to tour the campus or watch a chemistry demonstration. Before the awards ceremony, students heard a presentation from Chemistry Professor Jimmie Oxley, an internationally renowned expert on explosives and energetic materials.
“The contest is a great opportunity for high school students to have fun with chemistry. We hope that the students found it enjoyable to compete with their fellow students in a scholarly sporting event.” said Ben Ruekberg, manager of the chemical undergrad lab, and organizer of the contest.
“The contest also gives students and their teachers an opportunity to see our campus, to see our facilities in our new building, and to meet members of the chemistry faculty and staff as well as some graduate students,” Ruekberg said.
This contest would not be possible without the good will and help from faculty, staff and graduate students at the University.