On April 15, the four winners of this year's Swiss Chemistry Olympiad were awarded gold medals at ETH Zurich. They are among more than 300 young people from around 90 countries who will compete in the International Chemistry Olympiad (IChO) in July. The competition will be held in Switzerland for the first time in 2023.

Winners of the Swiss Chemistry Olympiad 2023
- Vivian Michael Huber, Allgemeine Gewerbeschule Basel (BS)
- Sabine Isabelle Neuhaus, Berufsbildungszentrum IDM Thun (BE)
- Alex Martinetti, Centro professionale tecnico Lugano-Trevano (TI)
- Andrin Hauenstein, Kantonsschule Uster (ZH)

Representing Liechtenstein at the ICh:
- Merlin Vogt, Liechtenstein Gymnasium (FL).

In total, this year 472 young people participated in the Swiss Chemistry Olympiad. The top 15 attended the national finals from April 11-15, where they put their theoretical and practical knowledge of chemistry to the test during two three-hour exams. Three days of intensive training preceded the exam. In the mornings, the high school students attended lectures on topics such as organic chemistry or spectroscopy, and in the afternoons they had to apply what they had learned in the laboratory. "During the lessons, PhD students gave us useful tricks of the trade," says bronze winner Noah. The result came as a surprise to him, says first-place winner Vivian, who is doing an apprenticeship at Roche. "I didn't think I would get this far!"

Meetings with like-minded people from all over the world now await the four Swiss champions. In other years, they would have had to travel to another country for this - in 2023, the world is coming to Switzerland. From July 16 - 25, the International Chemistry Olympiad will take place on the Hönggerberg campus of ETH Zurich. More than 300 young chemists* from around 90 countries will travel to Zurich to make contacts, look for smart solutions and get to know Switzerland. "My expectations for IChO are to learn even more about chemistry and make new friends," says Alex, a vocational student from Ticino. "I'm looking forward to showing Switzerland to people from all over the world," says Sabine, who completed her apprenticeship as a chemical lab technician at Lonza last year and is now taking her Matura.

For more information about IChO23, please visit the website. You are cordially invited to experience the competition live in July. We will also be happy to put you in touch with the protagonists.

David Spichiger, SCS