2014 US Physics Team Travelers


L-R: Michael Winer, Vikram Sundar, Calvin Huang, Kevin Fei, and Alexander Bourzutschky

For immediate release.
June 6, 2014, College Park, MD — Five students have been selected to represent the U.S. Physics Team as the 2014 Traveling Team at the 45th International Physics Olympiad, a competition among high-school physics students, to be held July 13 – 21, 2014 in Astana, Kazakhstan.  They will be accompanied by coaches Paul Stanley and David Fallest.

The Traveling Team members are:

Alexander Bourzutschky, Montgomery Blair High School, Silver Spring, MD
bio: http://www.aapt.org/physicsteam/2014/team.cfm?id=910&year=2014

Kevin Fei, Carmel High School, Carmel, IN
bio: http://www.aapt.org/physicsteam/2014/team.cfm?id=912&year=2014

Calvin Huang, Henry M. Gunn High School, Palo Alto, CA
bio: http://www.aapt.org/physicsteam/2014/team.cfm?id=913&year=2014

Vikram Sundar, The Harker School, San Jose, CA
bio: http://www.aapt.org/physicsteam/2014/team.cfm?id=922&year=2014

Michael Winer, Montgomery Blair High School, Silver Spring, MD
bio: http://www.aapt.org/physicsteam/2014/team.cfm?id=924&year=2014

"Without a doubt this group of students is the strongest group I have ever worked with," said Academic Director, Paul Stanley. He compared the group to Bose-Einstein condensation for the way they coalesce into a single entity, transforming from 19 separate students into a single entity, the United States Physics Team.  "I would have been happy to travel with them all but the rules of the International Physics Olympiad required that we choose five."

The students attended a rigorous training camp at the University of Maryland and George Washington University, where, through classes, labs, and special lectures, they were coached on difficult physics concepts, and then took a series of exams. They also made a trip to nearby Washington, DC to visit their senators. The leaders of the 2014 U.S. Physics team are: Paul Stanley, Academic Director; Senior Coach, Andrew Lin; Coaches, JiaJia Dong, David Fallest; and Assistant Coach, Lucy Chen.

Funding and Sponsorship
The U.S. Physics Olympiad Program was started in 1986 by AAPT to promote and demonstrate academic excellence. It continues to be supported as a joint initiative between AAPT, AIP, and the member societies of the American Institute of Physics: Acoustical Society of America, American Association of Physicists in Medicine, American Astronomical Society, American Crystallographic Society, American Meteorological Society, American Physical Society, AVS - Science and Technology of Materials, Interfaces, and Processing, Optical Society America, and the Society of Rheology. Additional sponsorship is provided by Cambridge University Press, E. E. Shaw & Company, Ellington Management Group, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Pearson Higher Education, Princeton University Press, Texas Instruments, Beloit College, The George Washington University, and the University of Maryland.

Funding for the U.S. Physics Team also depends on donations from concerned individuals and organizations.  Contributions are entirely used to support the selection, training, and travel of the team.  Donations to the U.S. Physics Team are accepted at www.aapt.org/physicsteam/donate.cfm.

More on the Web
Main website of the U.S. Physics Team: http://www.aapt.org/physicsteam/2014/
History of the physics team, including past winners: http://www.aapt.org/physicsteam/2014/program.cfm
45th International Physics Olympiad:  http://ipho2014.kz/

About the International Physics Olympiad
AAPT began the program in 1986 to promote and demonstrate academic excellence. The International Physics Olympiad (IPHO) is a nine-day competition among pre-university students from more than 90 nations. The 2014 Olympiad will be held in Astana, Kazakhstan, from July 13-21.

U.S. Physics Team Selection
AAPT is responsible for recruiting, selecting, and training the U.S. Physics Team each year to compete in the IPHO Competition. This selection process begins in early January when high schools register their students to participate in the Fnet=ma exam. Approximately 300 top scorers on this first test advanced to the Semifinal round of competition.

A second exam is used as the basis for selection of the members of the U.S. Physics Team.  In May these students traveled from schools all over the United States, to the University of Maryland-College Park for the U.S. Physics Team Training Camp. There, they engaged in nine days of intense studying, mystery lab, daily exams, and problem solving.

At the end of that training camp, five students and an alternate were selected as the "Traveling Team" to represent the United States Physics Team at the IPhO. In July, the Traveling Team and their coaches will attend a three day Mini Camp of intense laboratory work before moving on to the IPhO.

About AAPT
AAPT (www.aapt.org) is the premier national organization and authority on physics and physical science education —with members around the word.  Our mission is to advance the greater good through physics education. To this end, AAPT provides our members with numerous opportunities for professional development, communication, and student enrichment.

Marilyn Gardner, American Association of Physics Teachers, mgardner@aapt.org, 301-209-3306