The National Astronomy Olympiad Program is designed to encourage students with good foundations in Physics and Mathematics and an interest in Astronomy to pursue further studies in this field. It involves a five stage process leading to participation of Indian team in International Olympiad in Astronomy and Astrophysics (IOAA).

Students selected for the third stage are invited to the Orientation Cum Selection Camp. The camp is of about three weeks duration. The camp includes several theoretical, data analysis and observation tests. Students are trained in basic concepts in astronomy and astrophysics during the camp. Orientation is provided to students especially for problem-solving in astronomy, astrophysics and for observational astronomy tests.

Since the camp is an interaction between college professors and high school students, student facilitators are invited to bridge the gap. I had the wonderful opportunity of being one of the three facilitators in 2015. Our role involved helping students with general queries regarding astronomy and academia (and life :P). We were also involved in setting up the exams and evaluating the students.

The Indian team at International Olympiad of Astronomy and Astrophysics 2015 gave the best result in all its 9 years of participation, topping the tally with 3 golds and 2 silvers and also winning the team competition.