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Areté Biology Challenge

09 July 2020  |  G Denison

The Areté Challenges are competitions in a number of different subjects, open to students attending the schools in the Areté Learning Trust – Richmond School, Stokesley School and Northallerton School.

They were inspired by the many and varied competitions that universities have for A level students and came about when staff were thinking about how to provide opportunities to challenge and inspire students during lockdown.

The winners of the 2020 Areté Biology Challenge were announced on Monday 29th June. The challenge was to “research and present a scientific topic within the field of epidemiology, the branch of science which deals with the incidence, distribution and possible control of diseases.”

The judges, Dr Andrew Mackenzie and Dr Mike Parrott, said, “We were very pleasantly surprised by both the variety of entries and their quality. The winning entries in all three age categories were superb.”

The Key Stage 4 winner (and the judges’ overall favourite) was Amélie Hunter, a year 11 student at Northallerton School. Amélie’s entry was entitled ‘You think you have had it bad…Plague: The Untold Story.’

The judges said, “This was an outstanding piece of work. It was well-structured, comprehensive and highly entertaining. Most importantly it told a great story.”
On receiving her award, Amélie said. “It was really interesting to do this research project, and I learnt a lot about how to write a scientific paper. I am very happy and grateful to have won the award for my plague essay.”

Brasenose College, Oxford kindly sponsored the competition and the awards were announced by Professor Owen Lewis, Professor of Biology at the University of Oxford. Professor Lewis said, “What I particularly liked about Amélie’s essay was the way in which the biological aspects of the disease were explained, alongside aspects of history and politics and how these things interact.” To watch the video from Professor Owen Lewis announcing the winners click here.

Huge congratulations to Amélie for this superb piece of work and the prestige of winning this competition. We look forward to welcoming her back to begin her A level studies in September.

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