Dominating science olympiad


Sayali Amin

Junior Sophie Lekas has been doing Science Olympiad since freshman year and doesn’t see an end in sight.

On Friday afternoons, students are relieved from a busy week at school and look forward to enjoying the evening. However, in the science hallway, a group of students have gathered in the honors biology classroom: the Science Olympiad team. Amongst the group, a girl with a reddish glint to her hair pours over an earth science book. Sophie Lekas, junior, is a three-year member of Science Olympiad, earth science captain this year, and next year’s president.

Lekas has been on varsity for Science Olympiad since her late freshman year. Her strong suit has been in earth science events, even though she hasn’t taken the class, which means she is often seen with the earth science honors textbook anyway. With her academically loaded schedule, the multiple instruments she plays, and her martial arts involvement, relaxing would seem very appealing to Lekas on a Friday. However, she is present at Science Olympiad, often mingling and helping any new members as well as working hard.

She initially joined the team because of her love for science. Although she wishes to go into engineering, Lekas believes that being around people who have similar interests makes Science Olympiad a great experience.

Her latest success and achievement is being president for the 2015-2016 school year, Lekas’s senior year. Being president involves communicating with all the captains (biology, earth science, physics, inquiry, building) and helping to lead most of the meetings. The main sponsor for Science Olympiad is the honors biology teacher, Mrs. Kathy Gabric.

“She and the captains organize and lead the underclassmen at practices and provide input on the rosters,” Gabric said.

Lekas added, “The only thing I would change is getting the freshman and new members more involved in the club.”

Lekas is very on top of anything related to meets. She makes sure that she is prepared, as well as ensuring that her classmates are ready as well.

“A few days after the regional competition, Sophie was getting together with some other Earth Science people to start studying for the State competition, which was over a month away,” said fellow varsity member, sophomore Shahzar Rizvi.

This year the Science Olympiad earned great success. They placed first at regionals and third at state.

“I think she will continue the progress we made this year of having a very, very close team,” Gabric said.

The easy atmosphere and closeness of the team are a factor in its success. Lekas is trying to encourage new members to join. Her enthusiastic and friendly nature will be welcoming for any intimidated underclassmen.

“We are working on a summer camp this June to introduce [Science Olympiad] to incoming freshmen as well as underclassmen, so it’s a start,” Lekas said. “My most memorable moment of Science Olympiad was pranking the seniors. As I was the leader of the prank, I thought it was great team building for the underclassmen and it prepared us to work together next year.”

Lekas found out she was president on April 24. She looks forward to next year’s season and planning new ways to make what she loves more fun.