16 August 2018
Iona Thomas-Wright (18) was presented with her certificate when she attended an awards ceremony at the Institution of Engineering and Technology in London. She was invited to return to the stage with St Margaret’s Head of Biology Mrs Abby Miller, for the surprise presentation of St Margaret’s being recognised as the British Biology Olympiad Top School in Scotland.
The national competition was entered by 7,800 pupils aged 16-19 from more than 630 schools. It comprises two online papers which cover a wide range of biological subjects including biochemistry, molecular biology, ecology and behavioural science. Most of the content is not work that is covered in the school curriculum, so students have to conduct extra reading and study.
To top her success, Iona has this week secured a place at Cambridge University to study Natural Biological Sciences after achieving four A passes in Advanced Higher.
“The questions in the Biology Olympiad were very challenging and so I was very surprised, and pleased, to do so well this year,” said Iona.
“It really helps to have a genuine interest in biology because you have to do quite a bit of additional studying for the test. All pupils who took part receive free membership to the Royal Society of Biology’s online student portal, which gives us access to current research and information, as well as the opportunity to get involved in other events. This is a fantastic way to keep up to date with advances in biology, especially for anyone who is interested in a career in this field.”
Head teacher Anna Tomlinson praised Iona’s commitment and hard work. “Iona is a fabulous ambassador to our younger pupils,” she said. “She is extremely dedicated to her studies and the hard work and perseverance she displays is an example to all those who know her.
“We are very proud of everything she has achieved during her time at St Margaret’s and we know she has a very bright future ahead of her in the sciences.”