A team of young Israelis scored big at two recent brain science contests that pitted the best young minds in the world for medals.

At the Asian Physics Olympiad, Israel was up against some of the brightest from China, Singapore and Taiwan.

Israel ended up ranked eighth among all 23 competing nations and took home an impressive six medals – two silver and four bronze.

According to Dr. Eli Raz, head of the Department of Physics and Optical Engineering Braude College in Karmiel and the leader of the Israeli delegation, the medals were nice but the fierce competition was best seen as a training ground ground to help future scientists gain the skills they need to compete on the international market.

The Olympiad is “a way to create a group that will lead Israel in the field of science in the future,” Raz said.

Meanwhile, at the invitation only First Lego League Robotics Contest, a group of high schoolers from the Modi’in Amit Boys High School dubbed the “Kipabots” scored an impressive second place in the Open African Championship.

Modi’in’s mayor called the boys’ accomplishment “a great source of pride for our educational system, our city and for the State of Israel.”

Dr. Ofer Rimon, head of the Science and Technology division of the Ministry of Education,agreed and said that both teams of Israeli students demonstrate how the countries commitment to science education has paid off.

Israel “considers encouraging excellence and the development of human capital as most important values,” Dr. Rimon said, noting that these “teams members are role models for other students and their success a tremendous contribution to the State of Israel and the entire education system.”

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