On Wednesday, February 28th, Staten Island Tech held its annual Russian Olympiada. Nervousness and excitement filled the air as the 55 competitors filed into the library after 9th period. After practicing for many weeks, students tried to fit in last minute practice before they had to compete.
Although not many students know about it, the Russian Olympiada is a fun, interesting, and exciting competition. Students compete in two categories: Oral Communication and Civilization. Participants are asked questions about their lives, their school and Russian culture. The competition is divided from levels 1 to 5 based on experience in speaking Russian.
Looking on and passing out snacks was Mrs. Ratushnyuk, one of the competition organizers. She was excited by the student turnout, and noted the various benefits of competing in the Russian Olympiada. “Every participant gets a certificate […] these awards look very good on college applications, and they are a very good indicator of personal growth and help prove to yourself that you can speak Russian on a high level.” she noted. Sophomore Kelly Chan echoed these sentiments: “I participated because I like Russian and I enjoy learning more about Russian culture. Russian Olympiada helps me improve my skills.”
Soon, Mrs, Ratushnyuk began calling students by level to begin testing. Before leaving, Chan remarked: “I am super nervous, but I’m going into a zen mode right now to concentrate so I can do well.”
Among the many other students arriving from testing, Chan emerged around 10 minutes later. She exclaimed, “All of my nervousness went away […] I feel confident coming out.” After finishing, all participants were very excited. They talked about the questions they were asked, and ate the various candies and cookies placed throughout the library.
Reminiscing on the Olympiada up to this point left many competitors with advice to give future participants. Sophomore Joshua Szymanski said, “You should really study as much as you can. Stay calm, and it’s really not as bad as you think it is.” As students left the competition, all felt that they had a good time and immensely enjoyed the experience.
The results of the Olympiada will be announced on Tuesday, March 6th at Maslenitsa. Out of the 55 competitors, 20 will be selected to compete at the state competition in Albany on April 25th.
Overall, the Russian Olympiada was a great success and more people should definitely participate in the future!