Impacting The Program

Science Olympiad captains help to transition the program over to virtual.


Kristy Mendoza Bonilla, Staff

Reading Time: 2 minutes

As education starts to shift towards a virtual platform, the captains of the Science Olympiad team are working on influencing the program by helping to adapt their own program as well as help others.


Science Olympiad contests that were once held in person will now be taking place virtually. These twelfth-grade captains are responsible for beta testing the new platform, providing training videos for new members of the program, and planning a virtual invitational. 


With the competition near, five captains of the Science Olympiad team, including twelfth-grader Laura Ngyuen, were given tasks in understanding each role that the platform had to offer. The website was created to hold safer Science Olympiad competitions because of the concern of Covid-19. The captains routinely switched to different positions every week to gain a thorough understanding of what the contest would be like for everyone involved. Although the website was created by a professional, Cy Falls was asked to play a large role in beta testing the new platform.


“We needed to test how we were able to navigate the new platform,” Ngyuen said. “[The] practice runs [were needed] to make sure everything worked in the system, and there were no bugs or errors. [The practice runs] were crucial to [understanding] the platform, before moving onto other plans for our club.”


After the developer received the data from the beta tests, the website was finished. The University of Texas had already used the platform for their competitions, and Cy Falls was next. But before planning their invitational, the captains would have to film videos based on their newly found knowledge.


“The other captains and I filmed four instructional videos that taught head coaches,

students, and tournament directors around the country how to host, conduct, and conclude a Science Olympiad tournament on the Science Olympiad web platform,” Lance Arbilo (12), the president of the Science Olympiad team, said.


Following the completion of both the informational videos and the platform that will hold the Cy Falls invitational, the captains needed to plan the nearing competition. The leaders of the team, especially the head captain, are burdened with the preparation for the contest.

Twelfth grader Sharon Han (4th box, on top) speaks to new members of the club about upcoming tests and the Cy Falls invitational. (Kristy Mendoza)

“The planning and organization are a great challenge,” Arbilo said. “Given that it is my responsibility as head captain to lead and guide the other captains in the correct direction. We do everything from creating event schedules, setting up the respective online tournament time blocks, keeping track of registrations, and attending meetings with other coaches from around the country to discuss any concerns or comments they may have about our tournament. We handle all of the above plus dealing with our team members at Cy Falls along with new members currently joining.”