LOWELL -- Lowell High School students have shined in several recent academic competition.
First, five LHS scholars competed in WGBH's High School Quiz Show Super Sunday in Allston. Competitors included contestants Monique Menezes, Vickey Ngo, Jeremiah Menyongai and Ibrahim Nizami, and alternate Simthyreach Dy. Eric Nguyen had prepped for competition but was unable to attend.
Eighty-nine teams from across Massachusetts competed for 16 spots in the televised portion of the competition. The initial competition consisted of an oral test of 100 timed questions. While the students fared well in the initial quizzing, they did not advance to the final 16.
Two weeks later, 10 LHS students competed in the regional Academic Decathlon competition at Milford High School.
The team consisted of Vickey Ngo, Daniela Deny, Paulina Preap, Michelle Mailloux, Ashley Mountry, Amanda Rosa, Andrew Kelley and Katie Anderson, with alternates Ibrahim Nizami and Justin Nguyen.
The competition consisted of a grueling, 350-question, seven-subject, test-based contest that focused on Soviet and Russian science, economics, history, music, literature, art and mathematics. All material was at the Advanced Placement level. Thirty-two teams competed.
Andrew Kelley was LHS's lone medalist, taking silver in mathematics in his division. LHS competitors' efforts were consistently high enough to ensure that the team members' cumulative score placed them 13th out of 32 teams, two spots higher than last year's effort and good enough to ensure that Lowell High will return to the state finals in March.
Coach Robert DeLossa, a teacher in the Social Studies Department, said the students' dedication to competitions is impressive.
"We have kids who spend their spare time learning college-level material on top of their regular studies," DeLossa said. "Then they have to get up very early the morning after the Harvest dance, spend an hour on a bus, take tests for most of the day, and then spend an hour late in the day coming home. They do it cheerfully and are excited to learn. They do Lowell proud."
Both teams at LHS exist under the umbrella of the DaVinci Society, which was created in 2005 by students as a means to support an Academic Decathlon team and to explore avenues of general cultural enrichment on a college-prep model. Students themselves decide what to do outside of competing in Academic Decathlon. Current officers are Monique Menezes, president; Vickey Ngo, vice president; Prohours Thang, treasurer; Katrina Vigeant, secretary; and Michelle Mailloux, communications officer.