West Orange High School Science Olympiad Team Attends First-Ever Competition

Advisors Ron Brandt and Michelle Schultz with team captains Shaurya Sanghvi, Abraham Dada, Divya Anand, and Derek Lim and the rest of the first-ever Science Olympiad Team Credits: Cynthia Cumming

WEST ORANGE, NJ – The newly formed Science Olympiad Team at West Orange High School (WOHS) had the opportunity to attend its first regional competition at Union County College in Cranford last week—and the experience proved to be exciting and valuable, according to the team.

West Orange seniors Derek Lim (class Valedictorian) and Abraham Dada (recently accepted to Harvard University) built the team with the help of fellow seniors Divya Anand (recently accepted to Johns Hopkins) and Saurya Sanghvi (recently accepted to the University of Michigan). Faculty members Dr. Ronald Brandt and Michelle Schultz served as advisors and high school PTA provided the $300 registration fee.

The Science Olympiad is a nationally based competition for both middle school and high school teams. The rules allow for a maximum of seven seniors and five juniors. One sophomore also joined the WOHS team.

Sign Up for E-News

All work and preparation were orchestrated by the students directly, as required by the rules of the competition.

The competition was a full-day program in which small teams of students from each school (one-to-three students per event) competed in 12 separate events involving chemistry, biology, physics and engineering skills.

Some of the competitions involved design and construction of projects ahead of time that were brought to the competition. For example, one student had to build a helicopter, another had to build a tower that could support heavy weights and a third student had to build a protein model.

Some competitions were unveiled to the students during the competition itself, i.e. a chemistry lab challenge, a forensics case, astronomy, anatomy and microbes.

The 24 schools that participated were judged in all competitions by college-level professors based on established criteria and points awarded.

At the end of the day, awards were given out in each of the individual events as well as team. The top schools move on to the state level.

“Although some of our students received individual recognition, the team did not score well enough to get a trophy and move on,” said Dr. Brandt. “The 24 schools that we competed against have been participating for many years and began preparing for this year’s competition in September. We didn’t start until December. So we consider this first year as a learning experience.”

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

West Orange

Deegan Dental Implant Special!

June 19, 2018


Deegan Dental is happy to announce our New Dental Implant Special Offer that will give you a reason to smile! Our New Special Offer, that expires 11/30/2018, covers a single Complete Tooth Replacement (including the Implant, Stock Abutment and E-max Crown) for only $2,200 per Implant; a Great Value ...

CycleBar Livingston Offers 4 Rides for $39

LIVINGSTON, NJ - CycleBar Livingston -- Premium Indoor Cycling -- is offering four rides for $39 for new riders only.

New customers can take advantage of this deal at CycleBar Livingston at 277 Eisenhower Parkway. Call them at 973-261-5647. Visit

Millburn's Peter Serruto Drafted by Cincinnati Reds

June 6, 2018

MILLBURN, NJ - Peter Serruto, who just completed his senior season at Millburn High School, was selected by the Cincinnati Reds in the 22d round of the Major League Baseball Amateur Draft on Wednesday.

Serruto was the 649th pick overall.

The 6-foot, 190-pound right-handed batter has been a defensive standout since he first suited up in a Millburn uniform as a freshman.

"Defensively, ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, June 20, 6:30 PM

Pleasantdale Chateau , West Orange

Taste & Toast Gala

Giving Back

Wed, June 20, 6:30 PM

Pleasantdale Chateau , West Orange

Taste & Toast Gala

Giving Back

Fri, June 22, 5:30 PM

Ginny Duenkel Pool, West Orange

West Orange Community Sports & Games Night

Michael T. McCormick, Jr. Memorial Foundation Donates New Scoreboard to the West Orange PAL Baseball Field

On Sunday, April 15, the West Orange PAL baseball teams began their opening ceremonies of the spring season with a heartfelt dedication of a new scoreboard, donated by the Michael T. McCormick, Jr. Memorial Foundation.  The foundation was created to honor the life of Michael, a lifelong West Orange resident, who tragically died in a car accident on the day after his 19th birthday, Aug.

Mt. Olive Memorial Weekend Tournament: Bringing Baseball Back to West Orange!

“I’ve got to find the right spot”

“Two out rally!”

“Protect the ball”

“You fired up? I’m fired up! I can’t hear you!”

“Breathe!” “Deep breath, reset”

“Whoa..where are you going?? You can’t move”

Just a few of the statements you may have heard this past weekend at the ...

Patti Nathan of West Orange Receives Distinguished Award from NCJW/Essex

June 19, 2018

Patti Nathan of West Orange was the recipient of The Hannah G. Solomon Award, presented by NCJW/Essex to an individual who has changed the lives of others through leadership efforts and service on a community level. The award was presented at the NCJW/Essex Annual Installation and Awards Evening on Wednesday, May 30, 2018 at Cedar Hill Country Club in Livingston.

With her trademark spirit ...