Academy @ Palumbo HS Chess Team Sets A New High Water Mark
Dear family, friends and supporters,
Last month, the Academy at Palumbo HS Chess Team reached a new high water mark in its 10 year history. They finished 3rd in the nation, in a field of 80 teams, in the under 1200 section of the National HS Chess Championship in Columbus, OH.
This is similar to placing 3rd in an NCAA Division III national championship.
Junior Tai placed 21st and sophomore Bobby placed 32nd, among 462 students, in the under 1200 section.
In his first trip to the Nationals, sophomore Andy tied for 25th, among 310 students, in the under 800 section.
Andy called the team together, and said “This trophy belongs to all of you. Everyone who played with me, went to practices, coached me, made me do tactics …. Thank you.”
The opportunities that you afford these students are invaluable. Without your help, they and their families would not be able to afford entry fees and hotel rooms at tournaments.
This is what Nationals meant to Palumbo students:
“Going to Nationals in Ohio for the first time in 5 years has honestly been the time of my life. I felt like I’ve redeemed myself from States, going from 1.5/5 to 5.5/7. This has been the most vast improvement for me, and it wouldn’t have been possible without my caring and chess-strong teammates and supportive coaches. They all made this past weekend the best yet. From the delicious food to the long bus ride to the in-depth reviews, Nationals has made me a stronger player and person, and I am honored to play for the best team I’ve ever played for. I also want to thank the PCS (Philadelphia Chess Society), the School District and our donors for making this experience happen. I look forward to going to Nationals again next year.” – Palumbo sophomore Bobby, 32nd place, K-12 under 1200
“Chess Nationals for me has been an amazing trip filled with adventure, emotions, and connection. When I finally reached my hotel room and saw what Columbus has to offer, I felt free. No, I was free because I got away from the everyday stress of my typical world. I could say without a doubt that I lived life when I went to Ohio. From the great architecture of the buildings to the night life of this quiet town of Columbus. Next were the actual chess games where we had strategies and tactics galore. My teammates and coaches were all really supportive and awesome people who taught me to be a better person myself. They were the best role models I could have. So when I received my award for playing chess, I knew right then and there that I felt truly happy. Not to mention that I met people from all over the United States such as people from Wisconsin or Buffalo, which was sooooooo cooooolllll!!! Also, we got to eat tasty food and trained to become better chess players and stayed in a super fancy hotel. This trip will stay with me for a very long time to come. I would like to thank ASAP, PCS, the School District and our donors for making it possible. I have never felt like a team more in my life than playing for the Palumbo Chess Team. Can’t wait for the following years to come to play on this team! Thank you.” -Andy, tie for 25th place, K-12 under 800
“This was my last Chess Nationals and I was glad I went. It is a rare opportunity for me to travel out of state. Even though the bus ride was painful, I got to meet many new friends while we shared chess, and weird stories. When I first went into the tournament room, the first thing I thought was, “o my it’s so beautiful and there are many chess boards XD.” It was a beautiful and colorful huge room. I felt a bit lonely playing in a section by myself, but my team was there for me. The Palumbo Chess Team is a nice community with friendly people. Palumbo Chess Team gave me many opportunities to explore and made me improve as a chess player and a person. Thank you to my teammates, coaches, PCS, the School District and our donors for making Nationals happen. It was a really great experience and I hope more people get the opportunities to explore in the fun chess world full of many wonders and possibilities.” Palumbo Senior and Co-Captain Linda, Palumbo’s only player in the K-12 under 1600 section
“Nationals was an amazing experience for me, as it was my first time leaving the tri-state area, and it was with the best chess team I could’ve asked for. I may not have done as well as I had hoped for but it was an amazing experience none the less. I will never forget this tournament. It would be a shame if this opportunity wasn’t available for other students as well. Lastly I would like to thank the School District for making this possible by funding the buses which we used to get to and from Columbus, Ohio.” Palumbo sophomore Brandon
“Nationals was a amazing experience. The people I met for the first time, and the people I knew before, all made me smile. I enjoyed hanging out with the team and really everybody on the trip. These games were always fun and even if I lost, I knew I had a team to support me all the way. Any suffering I felt didn’t feel like any sort of pain. With my team I feel like I can do anything.” Palumbo senior James, who narrowly missed an individual trophy
“Nationals for me is where you prove to yourself that all the hard work you put into learning chess was worth it. Nationals is not the end of the road of a person’s chess, it is the start. You meet players from other places and compete and talk about chess. You get to improve yourself more at Nationals because there are many people that are at your level or even higher. Losing a game isn’t such a big deal, because everyone learns from their mistakes. You can even lose all your games and it is fine, because there is a big chess world for you the perform in. Going to Nationals is just the start because you’ve only seen players from a few states, and haven’t seen any players outside those places. Nationals let me know that I still have a long way to go to improve myself.” Palumbo senior Ivan