Students Relaxing In Common Room At Abbey College Cambridge

Three Olympiad Successes for Juan Francisco

14th March 22

Juan Francisco Olympiad Success

Abbey College Cambridge student Juan Francisco in Year 13 is celebrating not just one Olympiad success, but an amazing three awards, from papers sat in one week.  Also following this success, he is one of 12 students in the country to be invited to attend the annual Physics training camp at the University of Oxford next month.

Firstly, having received a Distinction in BAAO Astro Challenge Juan Francisco was invited to participate in BAAO (British Astronomy and Astrophysics Olympiad) on Monday 24th January.

This competition is very difficult and involves sitting a gruelling three-hour paper.  To gain some marks is a considerable achievement, this paper is taken to test for stamina, determination, and resilience, not merely knowledge of physics topics and technical skills. He tacked this paper with great enthusiasm and achieved a GOLD award for his success in the competition. This year, 12 students were awarded a Gold grade, so this award places Juan in the top 12 students in the country!!

Next Juan faced the British Maths Olympiad where he was one of 100 students invited to sit the second round of this challenge.  Again, another incredibly challenging paper, designed to push and test the participants mathematical thinking, which Juan sat on 27th January.  Again, he received the top grade a DISTICTION, placing him in the top 25% of the competition.  Juan’s achievement in this competition demonstrates not just exceptional mathematical prowess, but also remarkable consistency and resilience.

Then having already sat two incredibly challenging papers, on the 31st January, Juan Francisco, was invited to sit Round 2 of the BPhO (British Physics Olympiad), Juan achieved a Top Gold in round 1 (given to the top 2% of performers in this extremely challenging paper).

Round 2 is by invitation only, so to even be invited to sit the paper is an achievement and this was another incredibly hard paper.  Juan again demonstrated his excellent knowledge and achieved a SILVER award.

Due to Juan’s exceptional performance in Rounds 1 & 2 of the British Physics Olympiad, he has been selected to attend the annual training camp in Oxford, hosted by the University of Oxford next month.

12 students are invited to this each year, so to be one of 12 selected from the national pool of Olympiad students highlights his amazing aptitude for Physics. From the camp, five students will be selected to represent the UK at the international competition.

To sit all three of these papers in one week has shown outstanding dedication and resilience and to achieve an award in any of them would have been an amazing achievement, but to receive awards for all three papers and be selected for the Physic Training camp is outstanding and well deserved.

Talking about his experiences, Juan Francisco commented “Preparing for three very difficult tests that took place over the course of a week was a true challenge. This preparation took months which was finally worth it and I put my problem-solving skills at practice to train my brain and consolidate the knowledge in order to tackle the questions. In addition, the fascination and deep passion I have for Maths and Physics along with the hard work guided me towards success. I feel very happy since I exceeded my expectations for the round 2 Olympiads and I am even pretty excited as I have been invited to the Oxford Training Camp at the University of Oxford as part of the selection process for the Team to represent the UK at the International Physics Olympiads“.

Juan Francisco is an outstanding student, who works incredibly hard.  But he is also a key member of the student community here and is always seen helping and supporting with events in the boarding houses (even though he is a day student) and has a lot to contribute to the college.

He has shown exceptional talent for Maths and Physics, and I know that he will continue to achieve exceptional results.” Andrew Humphris, Vice Principal Academic.

Everyone in the Abbey College Community wishes Juan Good Luck at the University of Oxford Training Camp.