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The first edition of the French Social Science Olympiad was a success

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The French-speaking Olympiad Association (Francolympiades) has organized the first edition of the Social Sciences Olympiad (Olysso). The finale took place at the campus of the French speaking Catholic University of Leuven (UCL). 598 students aged 17-18 participated in this unique event.

The participants contested in the categories health, citizenship, economy, social cohesion and education. The first 30 finalists of the 367 projects in total were allowed to go to the finale in UCL Woluwe. These 30 projects were presented to the jury, after which the best projects of each category were selected. The pre-selection was realized by a three-person jury, who picked out Laura de Rose in the category health, Laurie Bronfort and Dina Chamas in the section citizenship and finally Lucie Rosière and Coleen Ista in the category social cohesion. Before the award ceremony the winners were given the opportunity to present their projects to the audience. Next, Lucie Rosière and Coleen Ista’s project titled “How to change the negative image of Batogne as a center for refugees?” was chosen as the best project of all.
The jury of Olysso, that was organized for the first time this year, consisted of prominent figures such as the president of the MR-party in the Parliament of the French-speaking Community and Brussels MP Françoise Bertieaux, Prof. Dr. Nathalie Burnay (FUNDP, UCL), president of the French-speaking Brussels Parliament Julie de Groote, Prof. Dr. Marc Demeuse (UMons), Dr. Hugues Draelants (UCL), Prof. Dr. Vincent Dupriez (UCL), Brussels MP Alain Maron, Prof. Dr. Dirk Jacobs (ULB), Prof. Dr. Olgierd Kuty (Ulg), Prof. Dr. Pierre-Joseph Laurent (UCL), Prof. Dr. Marco Martiniello (ULg), Prof. Dr. Frédéric Nils (FUSL), Prof. Dr. Philippe Scieur (UCL Mons) and Prof. Dr. Michel Sylin (ULB).
The laureates of the olympiad, Lucie Rosière and Coleen Ista were granted 500 euros. Moreover, they were given the opportunity to do a social internship in a Third World country. The teacher who guided the students was also awarded with a prize of 300 euros. The other finalists were given different money prizes. Brussels MP, Françoise Bertieaux, held a speech during the prize ceremony and stated that a social internship was a proper award for this initiative. Afterwards, she complimented the participants for their talents and efforts. The president of the French-speaking Brussels Parliament, Julie De Groote, thanked the students, their teachers and their families for the energy they have put in these projects for 6 months. Thereafter, De Groote congratulated the Francolympiades and underlined that such an organization has to take place each year. She added that children are the future of the society and that therefore the Social Sciences Olympiad is very important.
Prof. Dr. Frédéric Nils who was one of the jury members emphasized that this was an important project for the French speaking in Belgium. “From childhood on, we are used to participate in mathematics olympiads, it is very interesting that students can now take part in a social sciences olympiad.”, he stated. Nils praised the organization for its innovational and unique character.
The finale of Olysso ended with a cocktail after the prize ceremony.
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