Bishop Sullivan Catholic High School of Virginia Beach repeated as champions of the annual Blue Crab Bowl, a regional academic competition that tests students’ knowledge of the oceans.
The team will represent Virginia in the national National Ocean Science Bowl (NOSB©) in Washington, D.C. on April 25-27, facing 24 other regional champions from around the nation.
The Blue Crab Bowl is a cooperative effort between the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, College of William and Mary; Virginia Sea Grant; and Old Dominion University’s Department of Ocean, Earth, and Atmospheric Sciences and Center for Coastal Physical Oceanography. Seventy-five faculty, staff, and graduate students from both institutions donated many hours of their time to ensure the success of the event. Virginia’s contest, now in its twelth year, is among the inaugural marine science bowls started in 1998.
This year's Blue Crab Bowl, held at VIMS, featured 16 teams representing 15 high schools from all corners of the Commonwealth, from Warrenton to Virginia Beach. Eighty students spent the day in heated tournament competition focused on the marine sciences. Grafton High School took second place. In third place was Chesapeake Bay Governor’s School-Glenns Campus, follwed by Seton School of Manassas in fourth place.
At this year’s Awards Ceremony, Congressman Rob Wittman (1st District) addressed the audience of 200. He applauded the students’ accomplishments and encouraged them to apply their knowledge, critical thinking, and teamwork skills to help solve the challenges facing Chesapeake Bay, Virginia, and the Mid-Atlantic region. Also attending the Awards Ceremony as a special presenter was Virginia Sea Grant Director Dr. Troy Hartley.
Using questions designed by marine scientists and educators, the contest tested students’ knowledge of oceanography, geology, biology, maritime history, and policy. Guided by their teacher coaches, students broadened their awareness and understanding of the oceans as they prepared for the competition. The Bowl provides a forum for students who excel in math and science to receive regional and national recognition for their diligence and talent. During Saturday's event, the competition started with a field of 16 teams, with four emerging as top contenders by late afternoon.
Competing teams included:
- Bishop Sullivan Catholic High School – A Team, Virginia Beach
- Bishop Sullivan Catholic High School – B Team, Virginia Beach
- Broadwater Academy, Exmore
- Chesapeake Bay Governor’s School-Glenns Campus, Tappahannock
- Churchland High School, Portsmouth
- Fauquier High School, Warrenton
- Fredericksburg Academy, Fredericksburg
- Governor’s School for Science & Technology – New Horizons, Hampton
- Grafton High School, Yorktown
- Isle of Wight Academy, Isle of Wight
- Maury High School, Norfolk
- Patrick Henry High School, Ashland
- Piedmont Governor’s School for Math, Science & Technology, Collinsville
- Richmond Christian School, Chesterfield
- Saint Christopher’s School, Richmond
- Seton School, Manassas
NOSB is a program of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership in Washington, DC. NOSB seeks to interest students in ocean science as a college major and potential career. Through 25 regional competitions across the nation, NOSB also provides an educational forum intended to generate student interest in the ocean sciences; improve awareness of our oceans, coasts, and Great Lakes; and create an “ocean literate” society that can meet the ocean challenges of the future. During 2009, an expected 2,000 students from nearly 400 high schools from around the country will participate in this twelfth annual event.
Local sponsors of the regional Blue Crab Bowl include: Virginia Sea Grant’s Marine Advisory Program; Virginia Sea Grant; the Virginia Institute of Marine Science; Old Dominion University’s College of Sciences, Department of Ocean, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences; the Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in Virginia; Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center; the Virginia Living Museum; Mid-Atlantic Marine Education Association; the National Marine Educators Association, and Leave Only Bubbles/What If Scientific.