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Armin Shamae'izadeh, an intelligent Iranian student and the winner of gold medal in the Third Nano Olympiad in Iran, appreciated the organizers of the Olympiad, and stressed that he will definitely study a nanotechnology-related major at the university.
Iranian students have so far participated in three Nano Olympiads. The Olympiad consists of two stages. The first stage of the exam includes multiple-choice questions about various concepts of nanotechnology. Students who qualify in the first stage participate in a 10-day scientific and nano-computational camp. In this stage, the students visit centers active in the field of nanotechnology in the country in addition to learning various methods to synthesize nanomaterials in laboratories, synthesizing nanoparticles and producing a nanocomposite by themselves, and to participating in nano-computational workshops.
Finally, students compete to win the gold, silver, or bronze medals. The examination is held in two sections including written questions and the presentation of their scientific achievements during the camp in the form of scientific article and oral presentation in the presence of nanoscience and nanotechnology referees.
Armin Shamae'izadeh studies mathematics-physics in Allameh Helli High School (special high school for genius students in Tehran). He was born in 1994 and he holds the gold medal in the Third Nano Olympiad. In addition to studying and carrying out scientific activities, he is active in other fields such as sports, music, and painting. He can also speak French and English.
In an interview, he speaks about the Olympiad and how he got familiar with nanotechnology.
Q: How and when did you get familiar with nanotechnology for the first time?
A: My first contact with the concept of nanotechnology was two years ago through Nano Club (www.nanoclub.ir). I participated in the First Nano Olympiad. I ranked 6th in the Second Nano Olympiad, and I ranked first in the Third Nano Olympiad.
Q: Considering the fact that Nano Olympiad is different from other olympiads and it has both educational and research approaches, what was your objective to participate in it?
A: I took part in the three rounds of the Olympiad because I wanted to experience in a practical manner the concepts I had theoretically studied before, and to observe the results if possible. In addition, improving my scientific level in the field of nanotechnology and using the help of professors in order to understand new concepts of nanotechnology were among my other objectives too.
Q: How do you compare the quality of the questions in the theoretical exam of this year to that of the previous year?
A: The questions of this year were more standard than those of the previous year. However, the number and difficulty of the questions had increased. Last year's questions needed more thinking while this year's questions were conceptual. One could answer them easily by studying the references of the exam.
Q: What is your opinion about the quality of the organization of the first stage of the exam?
A: The quality was perfect and the venue was very suitable too.
Q: Students who were qualified to take part in the second stage exam were trained in the three groups of nanoelectronics, nanomaterials, and nanobiotechnology. In which of these three groups are you active?
A: I took part in nanoelectronics group.
Q: Students were classified in 4-member groups and each group was guided by a scientific supervisor. Do you think this classification had any effect on the quality and efficiency of the camp?
A: Yes. When the groups are separated and the number of members in each group decreases, every student in the group has the opportunity to participate more in the experiments. I wish each group had enough time to visit the work of other groups and to get familiar with their theoretical concepts. It would help us to understand on what subjects the other groups were working.
Q: How was the scheduling of the camp in your opinion?
A: It was good, but the problem is that carrying out laboratorial projects needs a lot of time since they are very sensitive and they depend on environmental parameters. I think the optimum synthesis of nanocomposites takes much more than four days.
Q: What about the quality of the designed experiments?
A: The quality of experiments was very high. Students had to do more scientific activities in comparison to the last year. Since we ourselves synthesized nanomaterials and nanocompsoites, I have a feeling that approaching nano dimensions is not that complicated.
Q: Do you like to continue your studies in future in the fields related to nanotechnology?
A: I like nanotechnology and electronics very much. I will definitely study a nanotechnology-related major in university.
Q: Apart from nanosciences, what other sciences are you interested in?
A: I also like robotics and I have participated in the competition of warrior and rescuer robots. I also took part in the mathematics section of Kharazmi Festival, and I was shortlisted at the provincial level.
Q: Do you participate in other courses and activities except studying and scientific issues?
A: Yes. I speak English and French very well. I do sports such as tennis and horse-riding. I am active in artistic fields too and I've been playing the piano for 11 years. Oil-painting and calligraphy are among my other artistic activities. I am also interested in reading classic novels.
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