Resonance Students Win Gold & Silver Medals in IPhO-2011 Bangkok, Thailand

In the International Physics Olympiad (IPhO) 2011, Resonance’s Two Yearlong Classroom Contact Programme students Shubham Mehta, All India Rank (AIR): 02 (Gen.) and Nisheeth Lahoti All India Rank (AIR): 05 (Gen.) in IIT-JEE 2011 made a history for India by earning Gold & Silver medal, respectively, among 393 competitors & 84 teams from across the globe taking part in the annual event held at Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.

The competition, which began on July 10 and ended on July 17, drew contestants from 84 countries. Resonance’s Kota-based students, Shubham Mehta and Nisheeth Lahoti, the students of Two Yearlong Classroom Contact Programme for IIT-JEE 2011, clinched 1 gold (won by Shubham Mehta) and one silver medal (won by Nisheeth Lahoti).

Mr. R. K. Verma, MD & Physics Mentor, Resonance, called this a remarkable international achievement. He said, "Since last 3 to 4 years, we have been sincerely training students to qualify various stages of Olympiads in various subjects at national & international level. Our students had been able to qualify Stage I, II & III of various Olympiads but it has happened first time through Resonance, Kota that our efforts have converted into success at international level (Stage V), and our students, not only cleared all the five stages of IPhO, but won gold & silver medals, too. The exhaustive practice tests that the students underwent at Resonance, as a part of IPhO preparation and the strenuous IIT-JEE preparation, fructified into a huge success at IPhO 2011."

"The Year 2011 can be called a phenomenal year, as Resonance’s students scripted historical success, not only at national level through 2nd & 5th All India Rank in IIT-JEE 2011, but they also brought name and glory to the nation by registering their names, internationally, in gold & silver at IPhO 2011. With the strength of our system, we can confidently look forward to sunnier times ahead and more success stories to talk about," said Mr. Manoj Sharma, Vice President, Operations & BD, Resonance Eduventures Limited (R.E.L)

For Shubham Mehta & Nisheeth Lahoti, it's been a year of Sun-days. After being declared the All India Second & Fifth Rank holder (in general category), respectively, in the hotly-contested IIT Joint Entrance Exam 2011, Shubham & Nisheeth didn't sit back to rest on their laurels. They plunged right back into the thick of it, competing to be part of the 5-member Indian contingent for the International Physics Olympiad (IPhO-2011) held in Bangkok, Thailand.

Both, Shubham Mehta & Nisheeth Lahoti, studied at Resonance for two years where specialized and rigorous coaching is given for IIT-JEE and apparently it became handy for them in the IPhO's selection. "When you get trained to succeed at IIT-JEE, world’s toughest engineering entrance exam, you get trained for all other prestigious competitive entrance exams in the arena. The same goes true for the other way around. Preparation for Olympiads ensures that a lot of groundwork gets done for IIT-JEE preparation," said Mr. R. K. Verma, MD & CEO, Resonance Eduventures Pvt. Ltd. (R.E.P.L)

Shubham Mehta hails from Kota, the educational hub of India and Nisheeth Lahoti belongs to Jaipur but stayed in Kota for 5 years from class VIII to XII. After achieving phenomenal success in IIT-JEE 2011, both have joined B.Tech. at IIT-Bombay and have taken up Computer Science Engineering.

The 5-member Indian team won a total of 5 medals which includes 3 gold & 2 silver medals. The other three medalists from India are: Burle Sai Kiran (AIR-04 IIT-JEE 2011) from Hyderabad, Prudhvi Tej Immadi (AIR-01 IIT-JEE 2011), hailing from Dwaraka Tirumala, a rural locality of coastal Andhra Pradesh & Sumegha Garg from Bhatinda in Punjab (AIR-12 IIT-JEE 2011 and all India girl topper.) These were the other three bright students among the five-member team to represent India at the 42nd International Physics Olympiad (IPhO-2011). While Burle Sai Kiran & Sumegha Garg are the other two gold medalists, Prudhvi Tej has won the silver medal.

The medalists were awarded on Sunday, July 17, '11 at the main auditorium of Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand. Despite the two challenging five hour exams (one theoretical, one experimental), a festival atmosphere persists in the duration of IPhO and the programme of excursions and social activities gives students the chance to learn about the host culture and make friends from across the globe. During the course of a week-long stay at Bangkok, the participating teams were taken on various excursions: Rose Garden, The Grand Palace, Toey-Ngam Beach, Sattahip. The closing ceremony concluded with a farewell party.

The International Physics Olympiad is organized for secondary school students in recognition of the growing significance of physics in all fields of science and technology, and in the general education of young people, and with the aim of enhancing the development of international contacts in the field of school education in Physics. The governing body of the IPhO is the International Board, which consists of the delegation leaders from each country attending the IPhO. The competition is organized by the Ministry of Education, the Physical Society or another appropriate institution of one of the participating countries on whose territory the competition is to be conducted. Each participating country sends a delegation, normally consisting of five students (contestants) and two accompanying persons (delegation leaders) who are specialists in Physics or Physics teachers, capable of solving the problems of the competition competently.

In India, the Physics Olympiad program follows 5 stages.
Stage I : National Standard Examination in Physics (NSEP)
Stage II : Indian National Physics Olympiad (INPhO)
Stage III : Orientation cum Selection Camp (OCSC) in Physics
Stage IV : Pre-departure Training Camp (PDT) for IPhO
Stage V : Participation in International Physics Olympiad (IPhO)

Thousands of students(more than 40,000 appeared this year) from all parts of the country appear in Stage I (NSEP) and approximately 300 students qualify to appear for Stage II (INPhO). This further funnels down the top 35 students for Stage III - Orientation Cum Selection Camp (OCSC) in Physics. The camps include several theoretical and experimental tests, and conclude with a valedictory function where distinguished scientists are invited to speak to the students. The top 5 students in the OCSC Physics merit list are declared to be special merit awardees, which constitute the five-member student team for the International Physics Olympiad (IPhO). In Stage IV, the selected five-member Indian team undergoes a rigorous training programme at HBCSE in theory and experiments. Special laboratories have been developed at HBCSE for the purpose of experimental training. Resource persons from HBCSE and different institutions across the country train the students. Finally, stage V leads to participation in International Physics Olympiad (IPhO).

At International level, the competition is conducted over two days, one for the theoretical examination and one for the experimental examination. There is at least one full day of rest between the examinations. The theoretical examination consists of three theoretical problems and is of five hours total duration. The experimental examination consists of one or two problems and is of five hours total duration. The total number of marks awarded for the theoretical examination, are 30 and for the experimental examination 20. After preliminary grading the organizers establish minima (expressed in points) for Gold Medals, Silver Medals, Bronze Medals and Honourable Mentions as per following:

  1. Gold Medals are awarded to 8% of the contestants (rounded up the nearest integer).
  2. Gold or Silver Medals are awarded to 25% of the contestants (rounded up the nearest integer).
  3. Gold, Silver or Bronze Medals are awarded to 50% of the contestants (rounded up the nearest integer).
  4. An Olympic Medal or Honourable Mention is awarded to 67% of the contestants (rounded up the nearest integer).

The working language of the IPhO is English. The competition problems are presented to the International Board in English, Russian, German, French and Spanish. The solutions to the problems are presented in English.