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Cate School’s Thanh-Liem Huynh-Tran Wins L.A. Brain Bee

He received a cash prize and a trophy, and will compete in the National Brain Bee in March

Cate School junior Thanh-Liem Huynh-Tran.
Cate School junior Thanh-Liem Huynh-Tran. (Cate School photo)

Cate School junior Thanh-Liem Huynh-Tran competed in and won the Los Angeles Brain Bee last Saturday.

He earned a cash prize, a trophy and a trip to Baltimore in March to compete in the National Brain Bee.

The diverse group of contestants came from all over California, from as far north as Los Gatos.

The first part of the bee consisted of a written test, an anatomy practicum using real brains — run by student volunteers from UCLA and USC — and a scavenger hunt (potential tie-breaker).

The top five contestants at that point went on to participate in a “Jeopardy” round that eliminated two competitors.

The last three contestants participated in a final “Jeopardy” round, at which point Huynh-Tran claimed the top prize.

In the end, Huynh-Tran’s closest competitor was an impressive freshman girl, who kept up with Huynh-Tran well into the last round — at one point it seemed the moderator was going to run out of questions.

Huynh-Tran credits his support from Cate faculty member Dave Mochel and the in-class sheep brain dissection as the key elements of his success. It took a lot of study, but his hard work clearly paid off.

— Don Orth is the communications director for Cate School.

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