Taiwanese students won two gold and two silver medals at the International Biology Olympiad 2009 that concluded in Japan on Saturday.
Lee Yi-chun (李易駿) from National Changhua Senior High School and Kuo Yu-chi (郭育奇) from Taipei Municipal Jianguo High School each won a gold, while Wu Po-fan (吳柏帆) from Taipei Municipal Chenggong High School and Chang Jui-che (張睿哲) from National Taichung First Senior High School each took a silver.
Among the 221 students from 56 countries who took part in the contest, 23 won gold medals, 46 won silvers and 66 took bronzes.
Lee, who will be entering university soon, attributed his success in the contest to the training he received in special biology programs in his first two years in senior high school.
Kuo, who is about to go into his junior year, said his interest in biology was sparked by his exposure to a molecular biology class in his first year.
He said he was pleased with his performance in the competition, not to mention the opportunity to make contact with foreign students with similar interests.
One of the second-place winners, Wu, who has already been accepted to National Taiwan University, said he has been interested in nature, especially animals, since he was a young child.
The other silver medalist, Chang, a junior, said he has been taking advanced science and mathematics classes at school and has a special interest in biology.
The competition began on July 12 and each contestant was tested in practical and theoretical areas in seven different categories.