September 22, 2011

3 Min Read
U.S. to Host 2012 International Chemistry Olympiad

For only the second time in its 44-year history, the International Chemistry Olympiad (IChO) will be hosted in the U.S. from July 21-30, 2012. IChO provides chemistry students the opportunity to compete at the highest levels and establish networks that go beyond cultures and borders. As part of its ongoing commitment to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, The Dow Chemical Co. is investing $2.5 million to bring the IChO to the U.S. for the first time since 1992. The American Chemical Society (ACS), a not-for-profit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress and the world's largest scientific society, will be the event host.

“As a global company with operations in more than 40 participating nations, Dow sees the International Chemistry Olympiad as a prime opportunity to help inspire the next generation of scientists,” said Andrew Liveris, Dow chairman and CEO. “With more than 95 percent of all manufactured products requiring some level of chemistry, highly educated and inspired scientists will help ensure a sustainable future for our company, our planet, and our communities.”

More than 70 nations will send teams of four students for the 10-day event of exams, laboratory work, and scientific and cultural excursions based at the University of Maryland, College Park, outside Washington, D.C. Competition will cover several areas of chemistry, including: analytical chemistry, biochemistry, inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, physical chemistry, and spectroscopy. Qualifying student teams are typically chosen through a series of regional and national Olympiads.

Dow’s sponsorship of the IChO is part of the company’s participation in the 2011 International Year of Chemistry (IYC). As a global partner of IYC, Dow is leveraging its science and technology expertise, sustainability focus and global network to increase public appreciation of chemistry, encourage interest in chemistry among young people and generate enthusiasm for the creative future of the science.

“ACS and Dow are committed to developing the next generation of chemists and chemical engineers,” said ACS president Nancy B. Jackson, Ph.D. “Through the generosity of Dow, we have the opportunity to raise public appreciation for the essential role of chemistry in our lives as well as for the future innovators who will use chemistry to discover solutions to our world’s most pressing challenges.”

Developing international relationships and encouraging international cooperation and understanding is a key goal of the IChO. Participants have the opportunity to establish friendships and networks between like-minded people that cut across cultures and countries.

“As President of the 44th IChO, I am immensely thankful to Dow for this wonderful support, and I know that the teams coming from around the world will be equally thankful,” said Dr. Ahmed Zewail. “The IChO is uniquely positioned for celebrating the beauty and cornucopia of chemistry with the world’s best young minds. By intellectually bonding with fellow students from all over the world, they form networks for the future.” Dr. Zewail, the 1999 Nobel Laureate in chemistry, is the Linus Pauling Professor of Chemistry at California Institute of Technology.

For more information about the International Chemistry Olympiad, visit

For more information on ACS, visit

For more information on Dow’s participation in the International Chemistry Olympiad, visit

For more information on Dow’s participation in the 2011 International Year of Chemistry, visit

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