Pennsbury Odyssey of the Mind teams compete at Virtual World Finals Competition

The Pennsbury High School Odyssey of the Mind team recently earned a third-place finish in the 2020 Virtual Odyssey of the Mind World Finals!

The team of Kartik Kannan (12th), Robert Oleynick (12th), Emma Desrosiers (11th), Rowan Levanthal (11th), Henry Lane (10th), Phillip Santos (10th), and Ansh Shah (10th) successfully placed as one of the top teams in the world in Problem 2, Division 3, titled, “Net Working.” 

This is the first time a Pennsbury High School team has brought home a trophy from the World Finals in the Pennsbury Odyssey of the Mind Association’s (POMA) 36 years of participation.  

The PHS team, which was unable to compete at the regional and state competitions, formed in early April when it was announced that this year’s World Finals was open to ALL teams online. Unable to meet in person due to the stay-at-home guidelines, the team met virtually to create a humorous, creative, and technical skit that centered around the use of three different devices to transport messages. 

The team said they were inspired by not only their many wonderful Pennsbury educators, but also by the current pandemic to create a performance centered around the human body.

Their skit combined art, music, and drama with physics, biology, and programming, all while using recycled materials and creative engineering. 

Pennsbury fielded a total of 18 OM teams this year from across the School District.

These teams competed in the southeast regional competition on Feb 29th. 

Eleven of the Pennsbury teams came in first or second place and were to advance to states, which got cancelled. 

Four of those teams decided to proceed with submitting for the virtual Worlds competition, which involved presenting an online video of their performance and explanations of what they put together, write-ups of their performance, and competing in a virtual spontaneous session, all while adhering to necessary social distancing guidelines.

Results from Worlds:

  • PHS – Third Place. Only the top six teams were announced at the awards ceremony.
  • Pennwood Middle – Fifth in their judged group; Top 12;
  • Quarry Hill Elementary – Sixth in their judged group; Top 12;
  • Fallsington Elementary – 21st in their judged group;
  • William Penn Middle – 11th in their judged group.

PHOTO CAP: The Pennwood Middle School team included, from left, Caylee VanVeen, Harshavi Birla, Dominic Gentile, Daniel Kim, Sophia Oleynick, and Megan Oleynick.

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