2021 International Chemistry Olympiad Team
Meet the 2021 International Chemistry Olympiad Team!
Austin Lin has always enjoyed problem solving, from chess puzzles to mathematical proofs. He took up the Australian Science Olympiads challenge to learn something new and further his knowledge in chemistry.
Though he found it difficult at times to stay motivated throughout the selection process, he persevered and is now one of four young talents chosen for the 2021 Australian Chemistry Olympiad team. So far, he has loved meeting other passionate STEM students at Summer School and discovering the exciting aspects of chemistry.
Austin looks up to physicist Richard Feynman, who he views as a talented pioneer in many fields of science and an engaging teacher. “I admire his ability to explain difficult and abstract concepts so simply through diagrams and words,” he says. “I’ve often watched his lectures to gain a better understanding of complex ideas.”
Science aside, he is a violinist for Barker College’s Chamber and Symphony Orchestras and enjoys playing soccer, a sport he adores for its energy and team spirit. He is also his school’s chess captain and loves programming for their robotics team. “I love all aspects of robotics, from the mechanics to programming, strategizing as a team and all the buzz-and-action at tournaments,” he says.
He hopes to enter a career in engineering or computer science.
From a young age, Keith Wong was always curious about the world around him. “Learning science was my way of scratching that itch, whether it was through reading books or some other medium,” he says. He decided to give the Australian Science Olympiads a go after participating for several years in AMT’s Maths Olympiad Program and loving the competitive aspect of it.
Today, he has been selected alongside three other talented students for the 2021 Australian Chemistry Olympiad team. So far, he has loved the challenge of the Olympiads program, which is beyond anything he’s encountered before. “There’s nothing like the feeling of satisfaction after cracking a problem that you’ve been stuck on or finally figuring out a concept that has been eluding your understanding for so long,” he says.
In his STEM endeavours, Keith looks up to Stephen Hawking. “He left a lasting legacy as a figurehead for science in the public sphere, despite being afflicted by ALS for over fifty years,” he says.
Science aside, he is part of three school choirs and is the lead violist for his school’s symphony orchestra. Outside of school, he is a member of a Sea Scout group, where he sails regularly and race on keelboats. He also hikes and camps during the cooler months of the year.
Keith is keeping his career options open, though the Olympiad program has piqued his interest in scientific research.
After participating in the 2019 Australian Earth and Environmental Science Olympiads, Oscar Dong is back for more. He was inspired by the vast range of opportunities the program offered him. “You were given the chance to both meet and interact with like-minded people as well as extend your knowledge in a science field in a mentally stimulating way,” he says.
He has again been selected to represent Australia alongside three other talented students, this time for the Australian Chemistry Olympiad team. During his training, he has enjoyed pushing himself academically and learning about chemistry concepts that are usually inaccessible to high school students.
Oscar strives to model the determination and perseverance of Stephen Hawking. “His ALS diagnosis didn’t stop him from making breakthroughs and exploring the universe, which I’m greatly inspired by,” he says. “It teaches me to follow my dreams, no matter what.”
He spends most of his free time playing instruments, including the violin, drums and guitar, and producing stop-motion films with LEGO. At school, he conducts extracurricular experiments as part of the Science Appreciation Club.
He also enjoys playing tennis and gardening using non-conventional techniques, like hydroponics and aquaponics. “I believe that these are the future for agricultural production and it’s just fascinating watching plants grow from just water!” he says.
Oscar is keeping his career options open, but currently hopes to enter a STEM field.
Fascinated by science and passionate about solving real-world problems, Vincent Ng decided to take part in the Australian Science Olympiads program. He is now one of four young talents who has out-performed thousands to be selected on the 2021 Australian Chemistry Olympiad team.
So far, he has thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of the program and getting the chance to expand his knowledge beyond the school curriculum. “Another highlight was being able to connect with other like-minded students from across Australia and bond over chemistry (no pun intended) and other aspects of life,” he says.
Vincent’s greatest role model is Richard Feynman, as he admires his extensive physics knowledge, perseverance and ability to communicate complex science. “He also taught himself advanced mathematics before entering college and did not let anti-Semitism stop him from succeeding in his field, despite being rejected from Columbia University due to being Jewish,” he says.
In his spare time, he volunteers for several activities ran by his school. This includes co-founding the Science Appreciation Club, leading the Student Representative Council and tutoring in the Chemistry Olympiad Training program and Mathematics Mentoring program. Outside of school, he enjoys playing the electric guitar and table tennis in local competitions and recreationally.
Vincent hopes to enter a STEM career, either in scientific research or medicine. “I learnt about university programs and careers in scientific research after hearing from some of the AChO tutors who are currently studying physics and chemistry at the university level,” he says.