Despite a tournament reorganization that kept our Academic Challenge team from competing as a group at the virtual state finals, we are proud that sophomore Merlin Mo nabbed two individual medals to continue MPA’s 25-year history of success in this math, science, and engineering competition.

Merlin placed fourth in physics and fourth in engineering graphics after being one of five MPA students to win medals at last year’s state finals.

The Academic Challenge is a competitive series of tests created by a team of academic experts and previously administered by the Worldwide Youth in Science and Engineering (WYSE) program in the College of Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Headquartered now at Eastern Illinois University, the competition has offered challenging annual exams to Illinois high school students for local, regional, and statewide competition since 1975.

Morgan Park Academy’s team has a 25-year history of top-level success in state competition, including Illinois Division 300 championships in 1997 and 2012. Recent state medalists include top-3 finishers Jeffrey Eichinger in 2015; Tony Tang and Adam Wu in 2018; and Merlin, Tony, Bryan Coronado, Ethan Deng, and Will Wei in 2019.