Team USA at the 2013 iGEO in Kyoto consisted of (left to right) Anton Karpovich, (IMSA, IL), Nirav Ilango (Chattahoochee HS, GA), Pranav Bhandarkar (North Oconee HS, GA), and Joe Kiernan (Moorestown Friends School, NJ)

Team USA at the 2013 iGEO in Kyoto consisted of (left to right) Anton Karpovich, (IMSA, IL), Nirav Ilango (Chattahoochee HS, GA), Pranav Bhandarkar (North Oconee HS, GA), and Joe Kiernan (Moorestown Friends School, NJ)

The United States Geography Olympiad was founded in order to provide American students with a way to qualify for the International Geography Olympiad (widely referred to as iGeo). The 2017 International Geography Olympiad will be held in Belgrade, Serbia from August 2-8, 2017.

Tell me more about the International Geography Olympiad!
Sure! Four of the top Varsity students from the US National Championships will win the right to represent the USA at the 2017 International Geography Olympiad. See the Nationals page for how the qualification will work. The International Geography Olympiad is an international tournament for high school students from around the world which is organized by the International Geography Union, a global professional organization of geographers. The first iGeo was held in The Hague, Netherlands in 1996 – other iGeos have since been held in Portugal, Korea, South Africa, Poland, Australia,  Tunisia, Taiwan, Germany, China, and Russia.  In 2016, 45 countries and subnational territories sent teams to the 13th iGeo, which was held in Beijing, including the USA for the fourth time. We came in 7th place overall, our highest finish yet, and had the 8th, 9th, and 20th place students for the overall competition!
Jason Flowers, a teacher and academic team coach at the Liberal Arts and Sciences Academy in Austin, TX, who also coached the 2015 and 2016 Team USA will be the head coach for the 2017 US team. He will be joined by Steve Muench, a social studies teacher and History Bowl and Geography Olympiad coach from Westwood High School in Washington Township, NJ.
Please note, though, that only Varsity students (i.e. students born before July 1, 2001) are eligible to qualify for Team USA for iGeo, in accordance with iGeo’s eligibility rules.
All participating countries send four students to compete, but the entire competition is done on an individual basis. All students will compete in a multi-media multiple choice exam, a short-answer exam, and a fieldwork exercise. There is also a poster competition too. The top students in each part of the competition will receive medals, and the top performing countries are recognized as well.
Subsequent iGeos will be held in Quebec,  Istanbul, and Paris among other locations.
For more information on the International Geography Olympiad in general, see www.geoolympiad.org/ as well as the iGeo Wikipedia page.
For more information on the past 2013 Geography Olympiad in Kyoto, Japan, see: http://japan-igeo.com/english/
For more information on the past 2014 Geography Olympiad in Krakow, Poland, see: www.geoolympiad.org/2014/index.shtml
For more information on the past 2015 Geography Olympiad in Tver, Russia, see: http://igeo2015.com/conf2015/
For more information on the past 2016 Geography Olympiad in Beijing, China, see: www.igeo2016.org

How much will this cost?
About $600-800 total per student for everything other than flights to Serbia (this takes the $1000 per student provided by USGO into account). This does include food at iGeo, lodging at iGeo, transport in Serbia, entry fees, coaches’ expenses, etc.  Further details will become available later in the 2016-17 school year.

Past International Geography Olympiad Medalists from the USA
2016 – 173 total students
Gold – AJ Manning, Bartow IB High School, Florida (8th Place overall)
Gold – Eugene Wang, BASIS Tucson North, Arizona (9th Place overall)
Silver – Matthew Janson, Providence High School, North Carolina (20th Place overall)

2015 – 159 total students
Gold – James Mullen, Monta Vista High School, California (3rd Place overall)
Gold – Kevin Li, Westview High School, California (7th Place overall)

2014 – 144 total students
Gold – James Mullen, Monta Vista High School, California (Overall World Champion)
Silver – Anton Karpovich, Illinois Math and Science Academy, Illinois (36th Place overall)
Bronze – Tine Valencic, Grapevine High School, Texas

2013 – 128 total students
Bronze – Joe Kiernan, Moorestown Friends School, New Jersey
Bronze – Nirav Ilango, Chattahoochee High School, Georgia
Bronze – Anton Karpovich, Illinois Math and Science Academy, Illinois

Team USA Results
2016 – 7th out of 45 teams
2015 – tied for 12th out of 40 teams
2014 – 10th out of 36 teams
2013 – 14th out of 32 teams