GENIUS Olympiad to add robotics, welcome 1,000-plus to SUNY Oswego


April 26, 2017

The seventh annual GENIUS Olympiad expects, for the first time, to top 1,000 visitors from around the world and to add robotics contests at the finals of the global high school environmental competition in June, hosted at and co-sponsored by SUNY Oswego.

Partnering with Terra Science and Education Foundation, the college anticipates welcoming a record 1,020 students and mentors June 12 to 17 for finalist competitions in science, art, business, robotics, visual and performing arts, and creative writing.

The students created 570 finalist projects among the yearlong competition's 1,234 submissions from high school-age competitors in 68 countries and 37 states.

The visitors will participate in several colorful, informative and fun events that are free and open to the public, all in Marano Campus Center arena:

* June 13, 5 to 7:30 p.m.: GENIUS Olympiad's opening ceremony and public viewing of projects

* June 14, 5 to 7:30 p.m.: the annual International Cultural Fair

* June 16, 1:15 to 3 p.m.: the closing awards ceremony

Additionally, high school students and parents are welcome to visit GENIUS' annual College Fair from 9 to 11 a.m. June 16 on the Marano Campus Center concourse.

GENIUS robotics is a new competition that provides students an understanding of the role of engineering and research in environmental issues, said Dr. Fehmi Damkaci, a member of Oswego's chemistry faculty and the founder and director of GENIUS Olympiad (Global Environmental Issues - U.S.). It encourages teams of up to three students each to discover novel solutions to known problems in the environment by requiring them to design, build, test and control their unique robots, he said. 

The master game in robotics is titled "Genie Recycler," where each robot will perform tasks related to recycling and waste management.

Other GENIUS Olympiad competition categories include entrepreneurship and social responsibility in business; ecology and biodiversity, resource and energy, human ecology, and innovation in science; photography, short film, poster design and satirical illustration in art; solo instrumental performance, group performance and solo singing in music; and short story, essay and poetry in creative writing.

Competitors and mentors will spend June 15 touring Niagara Falls and Destiny USA. On departure June 17, some will leave for an optional trip to Washington, D.C., and New York City, followed by a tour of six Ivy League universities in New York, New Jersey and New England.

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Young scientists -- Vadoud Niri (right), SUNY Oswego chemistry faculty member, reviews the water conservation project of Kenyan high school students Andrew Kimanthi Kioko (center) and Melvin Njuguna Ngure during judging in the 2016 GENIUS Olympiad global environmental competition in Marano Campus Center arena. More than 1,000 finalists and their mentors from scores of countries and dozens of states are expected for the seventh annual GENIUS Olympiad June 12 to 17 at the college.