Five Richmond Hill High School recently students traveled to College Park, Md., to compete in the 2011 Odyssey of the Mind World Finals, where they competed against thousands of students from around the world in the biggest World Finals Odyssey of the Mind has ever hosted with more than 800 teams from more than 20 countries.
The “Le Tour Guide” team from RHHS included Gemille Walker, Mitchell Gramazio, April Ward, Kathryn Hester, Andrea Wright, Emily Brown and Rebecca Frost. However, Emily Brown and Rebecca Frost could not attend world finals.
Regardless, their work in the group was evident. To qualify for world finals, the team placed second in the state competition in April, and first in the regional competition in February.
At the world finals in Maryland, the group of five claimed ninth place in the world out of 55 teams in their division.
“I’m really proud of the team,” said coach, volunteer and parent Karen Gramazio. “They have been working hard since November and have been fantastic in balancing meetings with school commitments. (Odyssey) has helped to improve their time management skills and also their money management skills because of the $125 budget limit they have to work with.”
Odyssey of the Mind is an international educational program that provides creative problem-solving opportunities for students from kindergarten through college.
The Le Tour Guide problem required that students perform a skit no longer than eight minutes that included two or more tourists, a tour guide who is a character from classical literature, a guard character that guards a worthless item, a team-created location and an inanimate object that must creatively show signs of life.
“This team has come far,” Walker, senior, said. “We have worked together all year, planning everything from meetings to fundraisers to raise the $4,400 we needed to attend world finals.
“I’ve been a part of Odyssey of the Mind for four years, and if anything challenges students’ planning, money management, time management and patience, it is Odyssey of the Mind. Despite all the hardships, it has been completely worth it. We have gained friendships not only with each other, but with students from around the world that will last a lifetime.”
Anyone can participate in Odyssey of the Mind. All it takes is a dedicated coach or school, and five to seven enthusiastic students.
For more information on registration or Odyssey of the Mind, visit www.odysseyofthemind.com.