12 October 2023
After being crowned 2023 British Brain Bee champion, Upper Sixth student Kornelia took to the international stage representing Britain and waving the flag for science at Woldingham. Alongside 32 other national champions who share her enthusiasm for and excellent knowledge of neuroscience, Kornelia competed in the prestigious International Brain Bee in August, where she finished in a fantastic sixth place.
The very demanding competition, which was held virtually, required participants to take an exam paper with questions ranging from neurotransmitters and physical properties of neurons to diseases and embryonal development of the nervous system. She was also tasked with identifying tissues and structures, analysing clinical cases, and ordering the correct clinical tests to diagnose patients. Kornelia made it to the final 14 students who had to answer questions – live – from expert judges.
The International Brain Bee is not Kornelia’s only recent competitive success. Her studies and talent in the fields of biology and chemistry, her passion for science more generally, particularly the medical fields of neuroscience and psychiatry, and her many other achievements both inside and outside the classroom, have secured her scholarship funding for university from the Rafal Brzoska Foundation in her native Poland. Kornelia is currently looking at study options in the UK and overseas, explaining: “If I stay in the UK, I want to study medicine and then specialise in psychiatry. If I go to the USA, I am planning to do a degree in neuroscience or cognitive science and then do research on psychiatric diseases.”
Mr Paul Rickard, Head of Science, added: ‘We are incredibly proud of Kornelia. What she is achieving at such a young age is remarkable. She’s also keen to give back. Kornelia has been asked to speak at a science conference in Krakow next month, encouraging other young people to be active outside school in the field of science and, alongside a group of friends, she is organising national Brain Bees in Armenia and Georgia. I look forward to seeing how Kornelia’s science career develops in her last year at Woldingham and in the future, wherever she decides to study.’