The Western New York Section of the American Chemical Society

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The Chemistry Olympiad is a local, national, and international competition designed to stimulate and promote achievement in high school chemistry.
Chemistry Olympiad in Western New York

General Information Calendar of Events Registration Procedure Preparation Rewards History in WNY Funding Other Olympiad Sites Contact

General Information

The Chemistry Olympiad is a local, national, and international competition designed to stimulate and promote achievement in high school chemistry. The Chemistry Olympiad begins locally, as high school chemistry students compete by taking a screening exam that consists of 60 multiple-choice questions. In the Western New York Local Section of the American Chemical Society, the top eight students* take a national exam that consists of both written and laboratory segments. The US National Chemistry Olympiad is sponsored by the American Chemical Society.
The top twenty-two students across the USA travel to a two-week study camp at the US Air Force Academy in Colorado. Four students from this camp represent the USA in the International Chemistry Olympiad (IChO).
In 2016, the IChO will be held in Tbilisi, Georgia.

* To promote widespread participation within a local section, no more than two students per school may sit for the national exam. A complete listing of US National Chemistry Olympiad rules explains all the conditions for the competition.

Goals of the US National Chemistry Olympiad:

  1. to stimulate all young people to achieve excellence in chemistry;
  2. to recognize outstanding chemistry students, and by doing so to encourage additional learning at a formative time in their intellectual development;
  3. to recognize the excellent achievement of the teachers of these students and the importance of the school environment in which they learn;
  4. to promote contact between ACS local sections and area schools to foster the interest and influence of professional chemists in the teaching of chemistry;
  5. to foster cross-cultural experiences and to acquaint students with similarities and differences between themselves and their counterparts in other nations; and,
  6. to challenge the chemical knowledge and skills of students in an international arena.

Calendar of Events

Local exams are usually given in March, national exams in April, the National Study Camp in June, and the International Chemistry Olympiad later in the summer.
The Western New York Local Section honors top performers in our Olympiad and their teachers during Education Night, typically held in late April.

Registration Procedure

  1. Registration forms are sent each year in February to all high school chemistry teachers in Western New York. (Any teacher who has not received a registration form may request one from Dr. Mariusz Kozik. Click here to send him an email or call (716) 888-2337.
  2. Your school may nominate three students for the screening examination.
    • Your method of selecting these students is entirely up to you. However, all students must be U.S. citizens!
    • If you nominate at least one student that did not take an AP chemistry course, then your school may nominate a total of four students (3+1) for the local competition.
    • Unfortunately, ACS rules do not allow for more than two students from one high school to take the national test. Therefore, even if all four students from one high school qualify for the national level, only two will be able to advance.
    • If you are not the only person teaching chemistry in your school, please consult your choices with the other chemistry teacher(s)!
If your school hasn't participated in the past, we hope to see you this year!

Did you know that...

  • The Chemistry Olympiad competition does not require any extra work commitment from a teacher! The Chemistry Olympiad is run entirely by Dr. Kozik as a representative of the WNY section of the ACS.
  • All travel expenses for students who qualify to the US team are covered by the American Chemistry Society.
  • As described below, numerous attractions and monetary awards await all students and their teachers!

Special Note to Students:

If you are interested in participating, please contact a chemistry teacher at your high school with the information on this web page (and with your enthusiasm!). Only chemistry teachers can nominate students at this time.

for the Competition

Training Session at Canisius College
Previous Exams


Monetary awards at the Western New York Level
Summer Research Experience at Canisius College

History of the
Chemistry Olympiad
in WNY

Our Success in the Past
Within the last twenty years sixteen local students have qualified for the study camp and five local students have been chosen as members of the U.S. team for the International Olympiad.
In 2007, for the first time in the history of the section, TWO students qualified for the Study Camp (Brian Chmielowiec a junior at St. Joe's and Elizabeth Peng, a junior at Williamsville South).
Participating High Schools since 1996
Western New York Section Olympiad Teams Since 1986

Major Funding

Honeywell, Inc.

Other Chemistry Olympiad Sites

U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad homepage
49th International Chemistry Olympiad: Nakhom Pathon, Thailand 2017

48th International Chemistry Olympiad: Tbilisi, Georgia 2016

47th International Chemistry Olympiad: Baku, Azerbaijan 2015

46th International Chemistry Olympiad: Hanoi, Vietnam 2014

45th International Chemistry Olympiad: Moscow, Russia 2013

44th International Chemistry Olympiad: Washington, DC, USA 2012

43rd International Chemistry Olympiad: Ankara, Turkey, 2011

42nd International Chemistry Olympiad: Tokyo, Japan, 2010

41st International Chemistry Olympiad: Cambridge, England, 2009

40th International Chemistry Olympiad: Budapest, Hungary, 2008

39th International Chemistry Olympiad: Moscow, Russia, 2007

38th International Chemistry Olympiad: Gyeongsan, Korea, 2006

37th International Chemistry Olympiad: Taiwan, 2005

36th International Chemistry Olympiad: Kiel, Germany, 2004 

35th International Chemistry Olympiad: Athens, Greece, 2003


For questions and more information about the WNY-ACS Chemistry Olympiad, contact:
       Dr. Mariusz Kozik,
       (716) 888-2337

Home Page for the Western New York Local Section
of the American Chemical Society

©2003-2013 Western New York Local Section of the American Chemical Society and the American Chemical Society.
The Goals of the US National Chemistry Olympiad are set by a subcommittee of the ACS Society Committee on Education.
Original page design by Patricia Springsteen.


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