Science Savvy

x_CVMSCarmel Valley Middle School (CVMS) has won first place in the San Diego Regional Science Olympiad for the fifth consecutive year. CVMS competed against 113 teams from 33 schools at one of the largest regional competitions in the country. They now will proceed on to the Southern California State competition, which takes place in early April. The school’s state team consists of 15 seventh and eighth graders who originally participated in three different regional teams, each named after famous Greek thinkers – Plato, Thales, and Aristotle.

Science Olympiad events are a mix of lab, study, and build events representing all areas of science – life sciences, physics, chemistry, earth sciences, technology, and general problem solving. To prepare for competitions, students meet weekly and put in a total of six to 10 hours a week of preparation during fall months. Classes are run by volunteers, and CVMS is always looking for individuals to help as a coach or mentor. “Watching students pick up a hammer for the first time and build a device or finally grasp a science concept is rewarding,” said Head Coach Scott Wooden. “Students also learn other life lessons such as how to take tests and exams, prioritizing, and above all, being gracious losers and humble winners.” The program also serves to broaden the range of students interested in STEM subjects, with 10 of the 15 students that made the state team being girls.

The students will continue their training as usual for the state competition, which will take place at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. “It has been 20 years since a team from San Diego advanced to nationals. We look forward to doing just that,” said Scott. “We have a very competitive team this year.” To learn more or donate to the team visit