MCLEAN, VA  – The Center for Excellence in Education (CEE) has announced the high school biology scholars who are participating in the 18th Annual USA Biolympiad (USABO) National Finals. The USABO is being conducted virtually.

Three students from New Jersey are participating in the USABO: Keshav Ratra, West Windsor Plainsboro HS North, Plainsboro; Richard Zhu, Peddie School, Hightstown; and Lucy Zou, East Brunswick High School, East Brunswick.

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Twenty finalists compete July 7 to July 17 virtually for 10 days of biology instruction inclusive of laboratory training and conceptual understanding followed by two days of testing. Ultimately, four students will be competitively chosen to represent the USA in the IBO Challenge 2020 (a substitute for the 31st IBO Nagasaki, Japan) in August.

“The mission of the USABO is to encourage excellence in biology education throughout the United States and to challenge students and their teachers to reach the gold standard in biology,” said Joann DiGennaro, President of CEE. “These students are some of the highest achieving biology students in the USA,” she added.

Approximately 10,000 talented students from across the country registered for the USABO. Nearly 500 U.S. high schools registered for the 2020 USABO. Nearly 600 were selected as semi-finalists. The 20 National Finalists were selected following completion of online 90-minute, 100 multiple choice exam.

“For high school USABO finalists to experience this level of research excellence is really an exceptional opportunity,” said Kathy Frame, USABO Advisor & Consultant.

The USABO mission concentrates on stimulating young scholars’ intellectual curiosity and developing their critical thinking in laboratory skills and biological reasoning to propel them to careers of excellence and leadership in science and technology.

The full list of 20 students participating in the 2020 USA Biolympiad National Finals is here.


About the Center for Excellence in Education

CEE was founded in 1983 by the late Admiral H.G. Rickover and Joann P. DiGennaro, President of the Center. The Center's mission is to nurture high school and university scholars to careers of excellence and leadership in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and to encourage collaboration between and among leaders in the global community. CEE sponsors the Research Science Institute (RSI), the USA Biolympiad (USABO), and the Teacher Enrichment Program (TEP). Visit