2011 team

Photo of Utsarga Sikder

Utsarga Sikder

Monmouth Junction, NJ

South Brunswick High School

Grade: Senior


traveling, problem solving, candlelit dinners and long walks on the beach


Junior State of America, Physics and Chemistry Club, Science Olympiad


2010 International Chemistry Olympiad Bronze Medalist, 2011 USAMO Qualifier, 2011 USABO Semifinalist


My name is Utsarga Sikder. For almost my entire life, I've lived in South Brunswick, NJ, the epitome of suburbia. With not much to do here, most nights will either end in someone's basement or a local diner. Nevertheless, I love it. This fall, I will be attending Princeton University where I plan on studying some combination of mathematics, physics and chemistry.

In my childhood, as I'm sure many others have, I often pondered basic questions about my existence and the world around me. If the Earth is floating without assistance in outer space, why doesn't it fall down to the ground? How big is the entire universe? Why do I perceive my body to be my own? The first phenomenon can be attributed to a wonderful little thing called gravity. While the latter two observations are less trivial than the first, physics attempts to provide answers to these and similar questions through rigorous analysis. I enjoy physics because it gives me a definite and deeper understanding of our universe.

I was formally introduced to physics in my freshman year, when I took AP Physics B and my teacher told me about a national competition called the Physics Olympiad. Since then, academic competitions have become a big part of my life. Contests such as the AMCs, ARML and Science Olympiad have given me the thrill of competition and motivated me to learn lots of interesting math and science. Most importantly however, are the personal memories and bonds forged through these events. I have made some very close friends through these competitions and look forward to meeting all of you in a few weeks!

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