Our International Biology Olympians, that is. My School at Waikato, along with the Department of Biological Sciences, has been hosting several days of the NZ Olympiad team's training camp for 4 years now. This sees students from all round the country coming into our first-year labs to get hands-on experience of many of the techniques that they'll be tested on in the actual international competition.
So I was rapt to hear that this year the New Zealand team gained its highest ever ranking at the 2009 competition in Tokyo. The top NZ student came 35th in a field of 221 students from around the world, and overall the team gained one silver & two bronze medals. This is an outstanding acheivement & a tribute to the hard work, dedication & talent of the students themselves - and also to the enormous effort put in by the dedicated team of educators who pour hours of their own time into the various activities necessary to select, support & train the NZ team each year. (For everyone interested in applying to try out for the team, everything you need to know is on the NZ IBO website.)
New Zealand's successful International Biology Olympiad team (from left to right: Max Biggs (Scott's College, Wellington); Sophia Frentz (Tauranga Girls' College); Geoffrey Hoggins (King's College, Auckland); and Jenny Liu (Burnside High School, Christchurch).
Congratulations to everyone involved, from all of us here at the University of Waikato :-)