GVSU to host Michigan Science Olympiad regional competition

Two people wearing goggles hold their hands in the air as they watch a small parachute lift off from a gymnasium floor.
Middle school and high school students from three counties will gather March 18 to showcase their STEM capabilities in special events, as these students did in 2022.
Image credit - University Communications

The Region 12 Michigan Science Olympiad returns to Grand Valley State University, where middle school and high school students from three counties will showcase their STEM capabilities.

The competition will be held March 18 at locations throughout Grand Valley's Allendale Campus, with the headquarters at the Fieldhouse Arena. Students from 52 teams and 39 districts throughout Kent, Ottawa and Muskegon counties will compete, said Chelsea Ridge, tournament co-director.

Seven middle school and six high school teams will qualify for the state tournament, Ridge said.

The 50-event schedule at Grand Valley includes a lab competition in disciplines such as anatomy and physiology and environmental chemistry, along with build events such as bridges, flight and trajectory, Ridge said. The competition runs from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., with an awards ceremony at 4 p.m. that will include remarks by Fatma Mili, GVSU provost and executive vice president for Academic Affairs.

Ridge said GVSU's long history hosting the tournament, which includes event supervisors who have participated for 30 years or more, is a point of pride.

"The supervisors' commitment to local students is impressive," Ridge said. "It is exciting and an honor to host schools from our region. It provides us an opportunity to showcase our high-quality facilities and faculty as well as providing local students an opportunity to see themselves as GVSU students."

Students will also be encouraged to use break time to participate in new activities as well as some that haven't been offered since 2019, including the Atomic Object Tech showcase, the pool and rock-climbing wall and an exhibitor showcase with 12 local business partners and organizations for students to engage and win prizes. 

The competition is sponsored by Disher, Haviland Enterprises, Gentex Corp., Webb, NDIA – Michigan and GWM MiSTEM Network.


Sign up and receive the latest Grand Valley headlines delivered to your email inbox each morning.