For the Antigo Times
This year Antigo High School restarted their Odyssey of the Mind program under the guidance of science teacher, Ben Olsen. Three teams of seven students were formed at the beginning of the year to compete in the state wide competition held on March 18 in Madison, WI.
Odyssey of the Mind is a competition that was started in the 1970’s by Dr. Sam Micklus. It is the oldest and largest creative problem-solving competition in the world. His idea was to create problems for school age children in which they had to use their creativity to solve. There are two parts of scoring for each team. The first part is a long term problem that the students have to develop a creative solution for and demonstrate the solution with a short skit. The second part is a spontaneous problem that the students receive on site and have five minutes to solve. Each part is scored and the winning team at the state competition is invited to the World competitions.
Antigo High School had two teams win at the state level competition this year. This May, Michigan State University hosted the 38th World Finals competition involving over 800 teams from the United States and 13 other countries including including Canada, China, South Korea, India, Japan, Russia, Poland, Germany, Singapore, Slovakia, Switzerland, Italy, and Mexico. Unfortunately, the World finals were held on the same weekend as AHS graduation. One of the teams was comprised of seven seniors that choose not to participate in the World competition. The other winning team was six juniors that decided to compete.
This year’s trip to the World finals would not have been possible without the financial support of the school board and several local companies. The team thanks Volm Companies, Johnson Electric Coil, Amron Employee’s Union, and the school board for the support.