If you have an ACS member number, please enter it here so we can link this account to your membership. (optional)

ACS values your privacy. By submitting your information, you are gaining access to C&EN and subscribing to our weekly newsletter. We use the information you provide to make your reading experience better, and we will never sell your data to third party members.



2021 US Chemistry Olympiad team named

International competition will be online again because of the COVID-19 pandemic

by Lily Raines, special to C&EN
June 14, 2021

Photos of Kien Phuong, Nikhil Seshadri, Qiyang Zhou, and Yitian Zhu.
Credit: Courtesy of the team members
2021 US Chemistry Olympiad team members (left to right): Kien Phuong, Nikhil Seshadri, Qiyang Zhou, and Yitian Zhu

The US high school students who will represent the US in this year’s International Chemistry Olympiad, to be hosted remotely by Japan July 25 to August 2, were announced on June 11.

The team members are Kien Phuong of Landon School in Maryland; Nikhil Seshadri of University City High School in California, Qiyang Zhou of the Princeton International School of Mathematics and Science in New Jersey, and Yitian Zhu of Seven Lakes High School in Texas.

The first alternate is Nethaka Dassanayake of Ames High School in Iowa. The second alternate is Nathan Ouyang, of University High School in Irvine, California.

The team members were chosen after they attended a virtual study camp that was hosted by the University of Maryland at College Park in collaboration with the American Chemical Society, which publishes C&EN.

This was the second virtual study camp experience for Zhou and Zhu. Despite the virtual format and lack of a laboratory component, all students stated that the social aspects of camp were very enjoyable. The team members will continue to work to strengthen their skills before the international competition begins. This will be the second year that the Olympiad will be held remotely, and without the laboratory component, because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The students will be joined by their mentor team at the international competition. That group includes head mentor Joseph Houck of Pennsylvania State University, high school mentor Esther Hines of Billerica Memorial High School in Massachusetts, and college mentor Laura Serbulea of the University of Virginia. At the study camp, they were assisted by peer mentors Anugrah Chemparathy, who won a gold medal in last year’s competition, and Edward Jin, who won a gold medal in 2019.

All the students wished to thank their families, teachers, coordinators, and study camp mentors for supporting them in their studies.

Lily Raines is a senior portfolio manager in the Education Division of the American Chemical Society, which publishes C&EN.



This article has been sent to the following recipient:

Chemistry matters. Join us to get the news you need.