IOB NEWS January 2020 – Session Highlights, Olympiad, Quiz, Workshops and more…  

Dear IOB member,
Welcome to the first issue of the IOB News, a bi-monthly e-newsletter of the IOBSL. IOB News was initiated by the IOB Council 2019/2020, with the view to build a closer rapport with our membership. Through this e-newsletter we hope to inform our members about the upcoming events of the IOB as well as create opportunities for members to contribute to our activities. We would like to hear from you, so please feel free to write to us at [email protected] with your comments and suggestions.

In this issue we highlight the Annual sessions 2019, our initial activities for 2020 and also some achievements of the next generation of Sri Lankan biologists. We appreciate the support that you have shown the Institute in the past and hope to have your active participation in IOB events in 2020.

Editorial team

39th Annual Sessions of the IOBSL

The 39th Annual Sessions of the IOB was held on 27th September 2019, at the National Institute of Business Management (NIBM), Colombo 07. Dr. A.J. Mohotti (President IOBSL 2018/2019) delivered her Presidential Address on the theme “Ecophysiological applications in agricultural landscapes”. Mr. Naalin Perera (IUCN) delivered the Keynote address on the topic “IUCN ecosystem and landscape strategies”. Prof. Y.D.A. Senanayaka and Mrs. Shireen Samarasuriya were felicitated in recognition for their significant contributions to the field of biology.

At the technical sessions, 56 abstracts were presented in four parallel sessions and the best presenter in each session was recognized and awarded a certificate. The best presenters were Ms. Panchali Gunathunga, Ms. S.A.D. Amaya Sathurusinghe, Ms. Roshema De Mel and Ms. Hasanki T. Gamhewa.

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Biology Olympiad

Bronze Medal for Sri Lanka at International Biology Olympiad (IBO) 2019 at Hungary
Nethmini Nirasha Ratnayake of St Joseph’s Convent, Kegalle won the Bronze Medal at the 30th IBO held in Hungary from 14-21 July 2019. The competition saw the participation of students from 74 countries and territories.
Awards Ceremony of Sri Lankan Biology Olympiad (SLBO) 2019
Sri Lankan Biology Olympiad Awards Ceremony was held at Mahaweli Centre Auditorium on 16th January 2020. At this event, 11 gold medals, 10 silver medals, 21 bronze medals as well as 16 merit certificates were awarded to school children who excelled at the SLBO 2019. The photo shows IOB Council members with the gold medal winners.

Inter-University Biology Quiz Competition

The Inter-University Biology Quiz competition was organized by the IOB for the second time in 2019. The competition was organized in two stages and saw the participation of 356 undergraduates from 13 State universities. Based on their performance 18 students were selected for the second stage of the competition held in August last year. The first, second and third places were secured by Ms. P.G.S. Lakmini, Ms. W.A.D. Malith Widuranga and Ms. J.M. Vishadinie Lakshika respectively (all from the University of Colombo). Certificates were awarded to all finalists and the best performers of each university.

The IOB will hold the first stage of the Biology Quiz competition for 2020 in April this year. Further details will be sent to the universities and made available through our website by March 2020.

Workshop on “Plant anatomical characteristics used in medicinal plant identification” – 29th January 2020

This workshop was conducted at the Department of Plant Sciences, University of Colombo in collaboration with the Botanical Society of the university. Dr. T.D.C.M.K. Wijayasiriwardana (Principal Research Scientist, Industrial Technology Institute) served as the resource person. The participants included undergraduate and postgraduate students who received hands on experience during the workshop