Middle school students became regional champions at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Middle School Science Bowl, held Feb. 22 at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. Coached by middle school math chair Vandana Kadam, the team of eighth graders Gautam Bhooma, Justin Chen, Ethan Liu and Arnav Swaroop and seventh grader Jonathan Xue went undefeated in the opening round robin portion of the event. In the elimination round, Harker fell to Miller Middle School’s Team 1 before meeting them again in the finals, where Harker won with a score of 92-64. The team will now move on to the finals of the national competition, which takes place April 30-May 4 in Washington, D.C. With the upper school Science Bowl team’s win earlier this month, this marks only the second time in Harker history that both the middle and upper school Science Bowl teams have been regional champions at the same time.
In addition to Kadam’s guidance, the team was coached by upper school students Kyle Li and Emily Liu, both grade 12, junior Russell Yang, sophomores David Dai, Harsh Deep and Rishab Parthasarathy, and freshman Rohan Bhowmik, who organized weekly training sessions with practice questions and coaching on how to remain calm and build teamwork.