Azerbaijan International

Autumn 2004 (12.3)
Page 20

Chemistry Olympiad
Azerbaijani Students Bring Home Gold
by Bakhtiyar Hajiyev

Azerbaijan participated in the 36th Annual International Chemistry Olympiad (IChO), which was held in Kiel, Germany, from July 18-27, 2004. The competition attracted more than 240 high school students from 60 countries. Each country is allowed a maximum of four participants. In the case of Azerbaijan, three of the four students were awarded medals: two Gold and one Bronze.

Afan Validov of Baku Private Turkish Lyceum and Sanan Aminov of Mingachevir Lyceum were awarded Gold Medals. Afan ranked 22nd and Sanan, 27th. Emin Jafarov of Ganja Turkish Lyceum won Bronze with a rank of 132. Hikmat Isgandarov also was among those who qualified to represent Azerbaijan.

The exams measured both the student's theoretical as well as practical grasp of chemistry principles. Students were required to solve inorganic as well as analytical chemistry problems during two exams that lasted five hours each, administered over two days.

This is the fifth year that Azerbaijan has taken part in IChO. Azerbaijan's achievements were viewed as quite significant, given the country's relatively small population of 8 million people. Even some of the leading countries in the world did not rank as high. For example, a number of major countries did not earn any gold medals, including such countries as the U.S., UK, Sweden, Italy and Norway.

"It didn't really come as a surprise to us that our team did so well," said Unal Akchay, head of Olympiad Affairs for the Azerbaijan-Turkey Lyceums. Azerbaijani students from Turkish Lyceums have won 94 medals in International Science Olympiads these last few years since they started participating.

Azerbaijan's coaches for the Olympiads deserve immense credit for the achievements of their students as well. Academician Vagif Abbasov, Mutallim Abbasov and Murat Irmak directed the studies of these outstanding youth.

Azerbaijan's participants are currently all senior high school students. Next year they will be seeking to continue their education in universities. It is important that Azerbaijan's future scientists continue their studies in well-known universities. In the past, some of them have succeeded to study abroad, such as Tural Badirkhanli, a gold medalist of the 2002 International Physics Olympiad. Tural has been awarded a full scholarship at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), one of the most esteemed universities in the United States.

Other outstanding achievements were made by Alezi Zelfman (Russia) who ranked First Place for the entire Olympiad. China won four Gold medals, one for each of their four participants, including Third Place rank by Liu Lianghui.

Azerbaijan International (12.3) Autumn 2004.
© Azerbaijan International 2004. All rights reserved.

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