As the second event of the second day of the International History Olympiad, the Blitz certainly occurred with a flash. The word ‘blitz’ is the German word for lightning, something that can also be used to describe this exciting event. The event itself consisted of four sections, consisting of two blocks of study time, a multiple choice exam, and a buzzer round. However, there’s an important twist that gives the Blitz its action and uniqueness. Unlike other events, where contestants have weeks to study, the topic is announced at the beginning of the event, and players are given a packet with information on the topic, a pencil, and only thirty minutes to study it before taking the multiple choice exam.

Photos: Sriram Susarla, Middle School, Texas

This exam contains fifteen questions, with a crisp five minutes to complete them. Following that is another thirty minute study period, and after that is the buzzer round, with the rooms each round occurring in determined by the exam. The top two contestants in each room then advanced to the division finals. Personally, as a contestant in this event, I found it fun to participate in. The topic this time around was the island of Rhodes, and I feel that I learned a lot about it while also having an enjoyable experience, despite the frigid room most of the event took place in. This event is a friendly competition testing the capacity of contestants’ ability to quickly obtain knowledge on a subject and adapt and apply it quickly. The victors of this year’s Blitz were Satvik Jain in the Elementary Division, Samanyu Ganesh in the MS Division, Robert Wang in the JV Division, and Cooper Roh in the Varsity Division. Congratulations to all contestants, and good luck in all future events this week!

Neeta Yechoor

Middle School, Pennsylvania