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On Jan. 8, 2019 (snow date Jan. 15), the New Jersey Science Olympiad (NJSO) returns to NJIT for the 13th consecutive year. The event, part of a national science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) competition, will welcome nearly 700 middle and high school students who possess both strong academic achievements and great interest in STEM fields.

Forty-four student teams from throughout the Garden State will compete in more than 25 hands-on competitions called “events,” which test skills on an array of subjects from anatomy and physiology to experimental design and geological mapping. With coaching from their science teachers, the teams will work on their projects in NJIT classrooms. Event supervisors will include NJIT professors and student volunteers, as well as representatives from UPS, Stryker and Merck.

Team registration and event impound will begin at 8:20 a.m., followed by event sessions from 9:30 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. and award presentations beginning at 3:30 p.m. Six winning teams from both the middle and high school divisions will be selected by a panel of judges and will then go on to compete in the statewide Science Olympiad. Winners in that competition will advance to the national level.

“For hundreds of students with an interest in STEM, the NJSO provides a fun day of team competition,” said Suzanne Berliner Heyman, director for program operations and outreach at the Center for Pre-College Programs, which coordinates the NJSO. “It also introduces them to NJIT and its prominent professors, which we hope further spurs their interest in STEM.”

Some of the 2019 NJSO competitions include:

• Boomilever: Teams will design and build a boomilever to support a minimum load and achieve the highest structural efficiency.

• Disease Detective: Teams will use investigative skills in the scientific study of disease, injury, health and disability in populations or groups of people.

• Experimental Design: Teams will be given a set of unknown objects to design, conduct, analyze and write up an experiment.

• Mystery Architecture: Teams will be given materials such as paper cups, drinking straws, paper clips, string, tape, paper, thumbtacks and craft sticks to design and build a device like a tower, bridge or cantilever.

• Roller Coaster: Teams will design, build and test a roller coaster track to guide a vehicle using gravitational potential energy as its sole means of propulsion to travel as close as possible to a target time.


For a full list of contests, visit:

• http://njscienceolympiad.org/events/b/descriptions/ for middle school

• http://njscienceolympiad.org/events/c/descriptions/ for high school


Participating high schools by county:

Bergen: Bergen County Academies (Hackensack), Immaculate Heart Academy (Washington Township)

Essex: Golda Och Academy (West Orange), Livingston, Millburn

Hudson: Rising Star Academy (Union City)

Middlesex: Sayreville War Memorial

Monmouth: Biotechnology (Freehold)

Morris: Mendham, Montville, Morris Hills, Mountain Lakes, Parsippany, Randolph

Passaic: Al-Ghazaly (Wayne), West Milford

Somerset: Central Jersey College Prep Charter School (Somerset), Hillsborough, Thomas Edison EnergySmart Charter School (Somerset)

Sussex: Sparta

Union: Union County Vocational-Technical (Scotch Plains), Westfield


Participating middle schools by county:

Bergen: Alpine, Eisenhower (Wyckoff), Hackensack, Tenakill (Closter)

Essex: Buzz Aldrin (Montclair), Glenfield (Montclair), Golda Och Academy (West Orange), Heritage (Livingston), Maarif (Bloomfield), Maria L. Varisco-Rogers Charter (Newark), Renaissance at Rand (Montclair)

Hudson: Hoboken Dual Language Charter, Rising Star Academy (Union City)

Middlesex: Baytul-Iman Academy (Keansburg)

Morris: Randolph, Robert R. Lazar (Montville)

Passaic: Macopin (West Milford), Paterson Academy for the Gifted and Talented, Paterson Charter School for Science & Technology

Somerset: Central Jersey College Prep Charter School (Somerset), Thomas Edison EnergySmart Charter School (Somerset)

Union: Carl H. Kumpf (Clark)


For more information, visit njscienceolympiad.org.

One of only 32 polytechnic universities in the United States, New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) prepares students to become leaders in the technology-dependent economy of the 21st century. NJIT’s multidisciplinary curriculum and computing-intensive approach to education provide technological proficiency, business acumen and leadership skills. NJIT is rated an "R1" research university by the Carnegie Classification®, which indicates the highest level of research activity. NJIT conducts approximately $162 million in research activity each year and has a $2.8 billion annual economic impact on the State of New Jersey. NJIT is ranked #1 nationally by Forbes for the upward economic mobility of its lowest-income students and is among the top 2 percent of public colleges and universities in return on educational investment, according to PayScale.com. NJIT also is ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the top 50 public national universities.