The Brain Bee

Eva Lucchino '15, Editor-in-Chief

The Undergraduate Neuroscience Club at the University of Pittsburgh hosts an annual Brain Bee and this year students from OC participated with great success.  The bee tests the knowledge of high school students of the biology of the brain and nervous system, which is a lot of information, in case you have never studied the topic before.  Various schools from the Pittsburgh area took part in this nerdy competition including: Central Catholic, Ellis, and Mt. Lebanon.

Five seniors from Oakland competed in the bee: Mia Fratto, Roisin Sabol, Mercedez Swencki, Meredith Walker, and Maddie Zalenski all of whom are in either Bioinformatics or AP Biology.  The questions were answered individually, so each girl was responsible for all the information and they were not able to work as a team.  Despite the difficulty, two girls, Meredith and Mercedez, advanced to the second round of the competition.  Although, Oakland did not win it all; it was a formative experience for all those involved, which is what Ms. Sirockman hoped it would be.  She wished to introduce her higher level science students to an extracurricular that allowed encounters with “other advanced science students [while] assess[ing] their knowledge of the brain”.  If you are interested in more information look at the website: http://www.brainfacts.org/brainbee.

Senior Meredith Walker had an enjoyable experience at the Brain Bee saying that she “loved being able to compete against other schools in the area” and “really appreciated the topic itself”.  Although the team was not as prepared as they could be, Meredith said that the knowledge of Honors Anatomy and Physiology was extremely helpful.  She hopes that in the future girls will be interested in creating a club to prepare for the bee.  Despite not being fully prepared the team did really well because the other competitors “with huge binders missed almost the same … [number] of questions as us”.  Meredith says she “loved the experience,” even if OC did not “leave with the victorious t-shirts and trophy,” because she and the other participants were able to have a lot of fun during the competition.  If you are interested in doing this next year try talking to Ms. Sirockman, and congrats to everyone who participated!