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Young Achiever: Derek Wang

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Derek Wang, 17, was one of the 20 best chemistry students in the U.S. selected to compete for a chance to represent America in the International Chemistry Olympiad. After weeks of study at the U.S. Air Force Academy, he was not able to make the top four, but plans to compete again next year.
Wednesday, June 26, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Age: 17

Family: Parents, Chuan-Bao Wang and Xiaojing Zhang; sister Janet, 13.

Residence: Franklin Park

School: Derek will be a senior at North Allegheny High School in the fall.

Hobbies/Interests: Derek runs cross-country and track; plays the violin in the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra and in a string quartet for weddings and events; and is a member of North Allegheny's science club and forensics team.

Noteworthy: Earlier this month, Derek was one of the best chemistry students in the nation seeking to qualify for the International Chemistry Olympiad, which will be held in Moscow. Extensive testing selected the nation's top 20 chemistry students for a study camp June 4-19 at the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo. There, they received college- and graduate-level instruction before another series of exams and lab work selected the top four for international competition. Though he did not make the top four, Derek already is planning to try again for next year's team.

Quote: “We had the nation's best chemistry students competing for the top spots, but we were all able to become friends, too... It was a really great opportunity to meet these people that I'll remember for the rest of my life.”

— Matthew Santoni

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