Student Spotlight: Science Olympiad’s Abby Williams

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Casady’s Science Olympiad team consistently performs at the highest level, with seven consecutive state titles in B division and five titles in C division. Club members are currently in the thick of competition season, attending work sessions and tournaments almost every weekend. Just last week, Science Olympiad competed at the Putnam City Invitational, and Cyclones swept the competition. The team owes a large amount of its triumph to strong leaders like senior Abby Williams (‘19), an integral part of Casady’s C division.

Abby has been involved in Science Olympiad since her freshman year, when she first arrived at Casady. She has represented Casady at state competitions every year since, earning numerous gold medals in her individual events. I spoke to Ms. Lisa Bek-gran about Abby’s performance at the 2017 national competition. She told me: “Abby and Kaili (Nguyen ‘20) placed 26th in Write It Do It. Any placement in the 20s is very high for us for C Division, and that year they were our 2nd highest placement.”

In previous years, one of Abby’s events required constructing and programming a functioning robot arm. She described a memory from her robot-building experience with a delighted grin on her face: “It was probably sophomore year, when Kaili and I were in the robot arm event and it was so janky… we had such a sketchy robot arm. Anyway, there was this one competition where we needed to weigh down the bottom bit because it kept tipping over, so we duct taped some gatorade bottles to the bottom of it. Then, we ended up getting first place at the competition.” Abby couldn’t stop chuckling as she recounted this memory; she admitted that although she and her fellow club members try to be as productive as possible at work sessions, when it comes to build events, they often produce some of their best work in the crunch time right before a competition. “Building is often night-before staying up late, but it makes it more exciting.”

Abby is currently preparing to compete in Designer Genes, an event involving problem solving regarding genetics, molecular genetics, and biotechnology. Abby is also preparing for Astronomy, an event in which she has competed since her freshman year. She has since developed a passion for the subject; she attended an astronomy camp this past summer and is even considering pursuing it later on. Aside from astronomy, she says that Science Olympiad has fostered her love for STEM as a whole.

Abby constantly puts forth her best efforts and contributes tremendously to Casady’s Science Olympiad program. With a tournament in Warrensburg, Missouri this upcoming weekend and the state competition just around the corner, we will undoubtedly be hearing of Abby’s success as she continues to flourish on the Science Olympiad team.