About 400 middle school and high school students from two dozen schools in southwest New Mexico will compete during the Southwest Regional Science Olympiad Competition at Western New Mexico University on Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019.
The Southwest Regional Science Olympiad Competition runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Winners will be announced at the awards ceremony in the Fine Arts Center Theatre at 4 p.m.
All of the events are held on campus in the Intramural Gym, Harlan Hall and the Phelps/Dodge-Martinez building.
“The active events in the gym are likely to be the most interesting, and the public is invited to spectate at any of them,” Southwest Regional Science Olympiad Tournament Director Eric Casler said.
The Science Olympiad teams compete in categories such as Earth and Space Science; Physical Science; chemist online; Technology and Engineering; and Inquiry and Nature of Science. The individual events — 25 percent of which are new or different this year — have names like Battery Buggy, Boomilever, Mission Possible, Mousetrap Vehicle, Mystery Architecture and Wright Stuff.
“This is part of a nationwide competition. The top teams from here will progress to the state tournament, and likewise to national,” Casler said.
The defending champions from Las Cruces’ Centennial High School will return this year, as will Socorro High, which placed higher than Centennial in last year’s state competition and had historically won the regional event at WNMU until 2018.
Socorro’s Cottonwood Valley Charter School will defend its 2018 regional title in the middle school division, while Las Cruces’ Sierra Middle School will look to top Cottonwood, as it did at last year’s state championships.