Australia’s first gold medal at International Chemistry Olympiads since 2005

Richard Huang, a Year 12 student from James Ruse Agricultural High School in Sydney, has won a gold medal at the recent International Chemistry Olympiad.

The event, that would normally bring together hundreds of talented students from across the globe to sit a five-hour theory and five-hour practical exam, was adapted so students could compete virtually. This year, students sat the five-hour theory exam in their own countries, within a time window.

Richard competed against 235 students from 60 countries to win gold, finishing in the top 10 per cent of Chemistry students in the world.

This was Richard’s third International Chemistry Olympiad, having represented Australia in 2018 and 2019.

When asked about his experience, Richard said, “It has been a very exciting and valuable journey with the Chemistry Olympiad program and I feel so happy and honoured to be given the opportunity to represent Australia three times at the International Chemistry Olympiad and at last win the gold medal this year.”

Richard was part of a four-member team representing Australia at the international competition. Richard’s team mates, Caleb Hsiung from Baulkham Hills High School, Sariena Ye from James Ruse Agricultural High School and Nicholas Wu from Melbourne High School all won bronze medals.

“At a time when STEM skills are so important, Richard’s gold medal is inspirational, and I hope it will encourage many other students to pursue science at a higher level,” says Ruth Carr, Executive Director of Australian Science Innovations, which runs the Australian Science Olympiads program.

Students with a passion for science and eager to win a place at next year’s competition are encouraged to register for the Australian Science Olympiad Exams. Registrations close 14 August. Learn more.