One of Selwyn’s brainiest set to take on the world

GIFTED: Lincoln High School student Alan Li, 16, has qualified for the for the International Brain Bee competition in Berlin next year.

One of the world’s up and coming brains is living in Selwyn.

Lincoln High School student Alan Li, 16, is the first in New Zealand to qualify for the International Brain Bee competition and will travel to Berlin next year.

It comes after he won the New Zealand national finals section of the Australian Brain Bee Challenge held in Sydney earlier this month.

Alan has now been selected to represent New Zealand in Berlin, while Melbourne’s Mac.Robertson Girls’ High School student, Elaine Cheung, was chosen to represent Australia.

Alan said he had always had a passion for science and is excited to travel overseas in July.

“I felt immensely proud, and excited about the challenge that lies ahead,” he said.

The Sydney competition consisted of four rounds of questions over two days.

The first two rounds covered physiology, anatomy and histology.

Alan said he found the first round fairly easy but the second round had more difficult questions.

The third round covered patient diagnosis, which Alan said he found the most difficult.

Participants were given 10 cases with questions asked about the condition on each case which covered disease and damage to different parts of the brain.

The next day the candidates arrived at the International Convention Centre, Sydney, for the final round which was open to the public. The participants were asked eight questions before the winners were announced.

“The experience of winning was particularly memorable. It took me a long time to digest the fact that I have actually won, and I will be representing New Zealand,” Alan said.

While maths and science are Alan’s favourite subjects, he is still yet to decide what he will do when he finishes school.

“I was thinking maybe engineering or scientific research,” he said.