By Katy TerBerg
Western Michigan University and the Departments of Biological Sciences and Psychology held the Second Annual Southwest Michigan Brain Bee on Saturday, Feb. 4. The event was a smashing success for one student in particular in the Kalamazoo community. Alec Sullivan, from Portage Northern High School in Portage, Mich., was the big winner and will attend the prestigious National Brain Bee in Baltimore, MD.
According to professor of Biological Sciences Dr. John Spitsbergen, “The local competition hosted students from four school districts in the area. The winner received a $500 travel award from the Michigan Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience to travel to the National Brain Bee in Baltimore.”
The winner of the National Brain Bee will represent the United States at the International Brain Bee. The Society for Neurosciences sponsors the International Brain Bee program, a neuroscience competition for high school students. The event runs in coordination with Brain Awareness Week (BAW) activities sponsored by the Society for Neuroscience and the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives. The Brain Bee is an attempt to motivate students to learn about the brain, capture their imaginations, and inspire them to pursue careers in biomedical brain research.
“The International Brain Bee motivates youths to learn more about the brain… We need their energy and their passion to help find cures for autism, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury and other brain disorders,” said Brain Bee founder Dr. Norbert Myslinski of the Department of Biomedical Sciences at University of Maryland Dental School.
Any high school student in grades 9-12 is eligible to compete in the local Brain Bees. Students who participate in the Bees are eligible to win prizes like cash, research internships, and trips to other Brain Bee competitions.
International Brain Bee