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The first NJ Chemistry Olympics took place in the spring of 1985.  The event was organized by Dr. Dana Levine, Professor of Chemistry at NJIT. In its first year, the competition consisted of 6 events that included molecular model building, chemical research paper, chemical engineering research paper, chemical nomenclature test, a demonstration show and a lab experiment. In subsequent years Dr. Reginald P. T. Tomkins served as the Director of the NJCO.  In 1998, NJIT invited the Teacher Affiliates of the American Chemical Society to co-sponsor the competition.  A steering committee consisting of Dr. Tomkins, Dr. Jim Grow and Dr. Dana Knox, from NJIT and Dr. George R. Gross of Union HS, Mr. John Penna of Governor Livingston HS and Mr. Borislaw Bilash II of James Caldwell HS revamped the competition.  Dr. Tomkins and Mr. Bilash became the Co-Directors of the competition.  The newly organized NJCO consisted of 10 events, including three research events, a demo show, a webpage design event, the nomenclature test, molecular model building and related Internet information search, as well as three lab events.  After 22 years of service, Dr. Tomkins retired from the leadership of the NJCO and in 2009, Dr. Somenath Mitra, of NJIT became the new Co-Director.  After 13 years of service, Mr. Borislaw Bilash II retired after the 2011 competition.  Today, the competition is in the hands of Ms. Natalie Macke of Pascack Hills High School and Dr. Edgardo Farinas of NJIT.  Together, the Co-Directors with the help of each year's Steering Committee pass on the tradition of the New Jersey Chemistry Olympics to inspire a new generation of future scientists and engineers.

The NJCO is financially supported by funds made available by NJIT, the American Chemical Society -- North Jersey Section as well as numerous companies from the chemical industry of New Jersey.  Our judges include faculty members from NJIT, members of the ACS and professionals from the companies that support the NJCO.  In all we have nearly 50 volunteers -- including the support staff of the Department of Chemistry and Environmental Science at NJIT that help bring this competition together.

The NJCO attracts schools from across New Jersey. Every year as many as 450 students representing 25-30 schools participate in this event.  A number of competitors have pursued further studies in science -- chemistry in particular and are now members of the profession.

Below you will find the archives of the New Jersey Chemistry Olympics.