BRIGHT sparks from King’s Ely Sixth Form have been awarded Gold, Silver and Copper certificates in the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge during assembly.

The competition is designed to challenge students above and beyond the AS Level syllabus and encourage them to think about science in the way they would at university. The challenge takes place under exam conditions and the paper includes complex calculations, advanced theory and questions that require unconventional thinking, as well as a bit of luck. As the paper progresses, the questions become more difficult, culminating in the final question that is only accessible to those with a real talent for chemistry.

This year there were more than 4,000 participants and, despite it being the first time that the school has entered, King’s Ely’s students came home with eight top awards. Five copper awards (top 61% of all entrants) went to Tony Lesmeister, Sam Huguet, Axel Rois, Tommy Chien and Ji Sung Lee; two silver certificates (top 23%) were awarded to Luke Cave and James Wege; and the gold award (top 8%) went to Charles Lin.

Student James Wege said: “The paper was an exceptionally challenging but fulfilling test of our chemistry knowledge applied in totally different situations. It was interesting to have tried something new that stretched my mind and I was thrilled to achieve a silver award.”

Tony Lesmeister added: “I would recommend the challenge as it is a unique and rewarding opportunity that should be embraced by everyone who studies or likes chemistry.”

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