Dow Westside Challenge chemistry competition winners announced

Staff Writer
Plaquemine Post South
The Dow Westside Challenge chemistry competition recently announced winners. They are MSA-East's Dylan Spedale, MSA-West's Elyse Arnold and MSA-East's Josh Babin from Iberville Parish and Devall Middle's Alex Gautreaux, Desiree Noland and Port Allen Middle's Leilani Hall.

PLAQUEMINE - More than 200 parents, teachers, students and community members assembled at the Math, Science & Arts Academy West in Plaquemine for the Dow Westside You Be the Chemist Challenge Feb. 5.

Sixth-eighth grade students totaling 29 from Iberville and West Baton Rouge Parishes competed against one another through numerous rounds of multiple-choice questions that tested their knowledge of chemistry concepts, important discoveries, and chemical safety awareness.

Sponsored locally and nationally by Dow, the Challenge is an academic competition created by the Chemical Education Foundation.

The Challenge aims to engage middle school students in chemistry through a dynamic event that partners members of the chemical industry with schools and organizations in the communities in which they operate.

"At Dow we are committed to supporting the next generation of scientists, engineers, chemists and innovators for careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields," said Abby Cook, Public Affairs Manager, Dow Louisiana Operations.

After six rounds of competition, first, second and third place winners from both Iberville and West Baton Rouge Parishes were decided.

Dylan Spedale, a student in Rebecca Polk's class at MSA-East, took first place for Iberville Parish. Elyse Arnold of Marsha Leger's class at MSA-West was selected second place and Josh Babin, also Polk's class placed third.

Alex Gautreaux, a student in Cynthia West's class at Devall Middle took first place for West Baton Rouge Parish. Desiree Noland, also a student from West's class received second place and Leilani Hall, a student in Farrah Piazza's class at Port Allen Middle, took third place.

The winners from both Iberville and West Baton Rouge Parishes will advance to the You Be the Chemist State Challenge which will be held at Louisiana State University in April.

The winner of the state competition will move on to compete in the National Challenge held on June 23 in Philadelphia. There, they will compete with state winners from across the country.

Participating schools in the local Dow Westside Challenge included Devall Middle, Port Allen Middle, Holy Family, Brusly Middle, MSA-West, MSA-East, St. John School, Plaquemine High, East Iberville, Crescent and Dorseyville.