PASCHAL HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT IS A SCIENCE OLYMPIAN
Junior Dominic Yurk Advances in Elite Biology Competition
A student at Fort Worth ISD’s R.L. Paschal High School is one of only twenty in the country selected to train for the International Biology Olympiad (IBO), a worldwide competition involving student teams from roughly sixty countries.
And he's only a junior!
After two rounds of challenging exams, 15-year-old Dominic Yurk has been invited to a residential training program at Purdue University, where he’ll learn advanced biological concepts and exacting lab skills.
Ultimately, four students will earn the right to represent the United States in the international competition, which will be held this summer in Singapore.
The accomplishment is especially impressive when you consider Yurk’s age. Now 15, he began studying at Paschal when he was only 12.
“He’s representing not only Fort Worth ISD and the City of Fort Worth, but the state of Texas,” said Fort Worth ISD Science Director Shane Woods. “I can’t wait to see what he’s going to do next.”
The USA Biology Olympiad began in February with more than 10,000 students taking the first round of exams, and only the top 10 percent qualifying to participate in the second round of testing.
This is only the third time a Fort Worth ISD student has earned the title of Science Olympian. The first two students, Mikael Thompson and Amit Patel, advanced in the Physics Olympiad in the late-80s and mid-90s, respectively.
For the last two years, Yurk advanced past the first round of testing in the Biology, Chemistry and Physics Olympiads. Last year as a sophomore, he won the Individual State Championship for 5A UIL Science, beating out thousands of students four years older.
“Dominic’s accomplishments are incredible and numerous,” said Paschal Biology and Environmental Science teacher Andrew Brinker. "I believe this is the most significant science accomplishment in the history of Paschal High School, and is among the top science accomplishments in the history of Fort Worth ISD."
Yurk hopes to eventually study Physics at either the California Institute of Technology or Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
ABOUT THE USA BIOLOGY OLYMPIAD
As the premiere biology competition for high school students in the United States, the USA Biology Olympiad (USABO) enriches the life sciences education of nearly 10,000 talented students annually. It provides the motivation, curricular resources, and skills training to take them beyond their classroom experience to the level of international competitiveness.
Since CEE began administering the USABO, every member of "Team USA" has medaled at the IBO. All four members of the teams from 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2011 were awarded gold medals. In 2011, Team USA achieved the coveted Number 1 position in the world—a first for the USABO.
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