By Gabriel Tomer
Many students shrivel in fear at the thought of taking tests. School is filled with them, and they are the bane of both the students who have to take them and the teachers who have to grade them.
However, at Mattoon High School, there is a team for the students who are not deterred by tests, but exceed at taking them. The Worldwide Youth in Science and Engineering, better known as WYSE, is an organization where students compete against other schools by taking tests in various different subjects. MHS recently won as a team at Regional competition.
MHS math, science teacher and WYSE adviser Brendan Aydt pinpoints the difference between WYSE and other groups that compete.
“There is a focus on a broad range of subjects, instead of just math or science club. There’s everything from math to different areas of science, to English and engineering graphics are included. It’s also competitive. We compete against different schools at Sectionals/State competition,” Aydt said.
Aydt says students should look at participating in WYSE to further their academic interests in various subjects that push students to their mental limit.
“They can learn a little bit more than what they typically do in classes. The tests are challenging, being at a high school and first-year college level. That challenges students to go beyond what they’re doing in their classes,” Aydt said.
MHS senior Charles Derrickson explains which students are able to compete, because not just anyone can join WYSE.
“You need to be nominated by a teacher to take a test. The tests are in math, science, English, or drafting. Teachers nominate kids they think will do well,” Derrickson said.
MHS senior Ryan Taylor was determined to join WYSE for academic reasons as well as the challenging aspect.
“I’ve always enjoyed a challenge, and WYSE gives a perfect opportunity to grow academically. Also, I’m going to major in Engineering in college, so math and physics are right in my wheelhouse,” Taylor said.
WYSE Regionals took place on Feb. 3. It’s the start of the competitive ladder that extends to Sectionals, then to the State competition. MHS senior Paisley Meyer attended Regionals, and felt strongly about competing.
“It really is just an honor to be chosen to go. Just being at Regionals gives a sense of pride for the work I put into my classes. Going to Regionals in WYSE was more to see how I would do, but it wasn’t super competitive like other Regionals I’ve gone to, sports wise,” Meyer said.