Earlier in February, the AGBU Manoogian-Demirdjian School (MDS) in Canoga Park competed in the 2012 Southern California Private School Academic Decathlon. 25 AGBU MDS students participated in ten categories and won a total of 26 medals, 10 of which were gold medals. Although MDS had the smallest enrollment of any school in the competition, it fielded the largest team and was the only institute to enter in three of the competition’s four categories. “We went up against Mater Dei and Notre Dame, schools that have over 2,000 students, and we still won more than our fair share of medals,” said AGBU MDS Decathlon Coach and English department chair Jason Strouse. “I think our ability to not only compete with these schools, but to compete with success, shows that AGBU MDS is one of the top private schools in Southern California.”
While the other schools practiced every day after school for as long as ten months, the AGBU MDS team had only two weeks to prepare for the competition. “My team is able to get an extraordinary amount of work done in a very short period of time,” said the coach. The MDS students excelled in the categories that required less preparation, such as math, science, and literature and essay writing. In the essay competition, AGBU MDS’s students competed against nearly 200 students and won five of the nine gold medals. Gold medal essay winners included senior students Arno Ekmekji, Gary Vartanian, and Nicole Yeghiazarian, and junior students Patrick Galoostian and Alina Sargsyan. Seniors Gary Vartanian and Alex Yeghiazarian each won two gold medals — Gary in Essay and Mathematics, and Alex in Literature and Science, respectively. Gold medals were also awarded to Melkon Makerian in Mathematics and Anais Zarifian in Science. Congratulations to all!