Alaska Sea Grant in the News

Alaska high school students test ocean IQ in National Ocean Sciences Bowl

Date: February 4, 1998
Contact: Judy McDonald, 907-224-5261,

FAIRBANKS, Alaska--Why is the ocean blue? Where does the largest tidal range in the world occur?

These are among the questions about the world's oceans that teams from 12 Alaska high schools will face during the regionals of the first National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) on February 28 at the SeaLife Center in Seward. Teams from Anchorage, Eagle River, Juneau, Shaktoolik, Unalakleet, Soldotna, Kodiak, and other communities are planning to give their all in an intense day of rapid-fire questions about biology, chemistry, geology, physics, history, current events and economics of the ocean.

The winning Alaska team will travel to Washington, D.C., for the National Ocean Sciences Bowl finals April 25-27. They'll take their best shot at the national prize: a trip to Portugal's Expo '98, where the theme is the International Year of the Ocean.

"Educators and scientists across the country came up with the idea of an ocean science competition because we want to broaden the awareness and understanding of the value of the ocean among students, parents, educators and the public," said Judy McDonald, NOSB's Alaska coordinator. "Alaska is a natural for this competition because our state is the largest coastal state and because much of our economy and our lifestyle is directly connected to the ocean."

Alaska is the site of one of 16 regional competitions to be conducted around the country. Each team consists of four members and most have one alternate member. Alaska teams also will compete for trips aboard research ships, visits to oceanographic research laboratories, and other prizes.

The 1998 National Ocean Sciences Bowl is being conducted by the 50-member Consortium for Oceanographic Research and Education and the National Marine Educators Association. Financial support comes from the U.S. Navy, the National Science Foundation, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Student teams from the following high schools, led by their coaches, are scheduled to compete in the 1998 Alaska Region National Ocean Sciences Bowl.

Shaktoolik, Brian Krosschell, 907-955-3021
Unalakleet, Frank A. Degnan High School, Jack Davis, 907-624-3444
Seward, Stuart Allen, 907-224-3351
Soldotna, Skyview High School, Mark Larson, 907-262-7675
Palmer, Colony High School, Dave Rose, 907-746-9581
Kodiak, Stacy Studebaker, 907-486-9211
Juneau-Douglas, Clay Good, 907-463-1912
Hollis, Dave Ulrich, 907-530-7108
Eagle River, Chugiak High School, Andy Sullivan, 907-696-9600 ext. 733
Anchorage: East High, Danelle Van Holstyn, 907-263-1297
Bartlett, Leesa Wingo, 907-337-1585 ext. 5309
Dimond, Elizabeth Larman, 907-243-1141

By the way, the ocean is blue because it is the color not absorbed by the sea, but reflected as visible light to the human eye. The largest tidal range in the world occurs in the Bay of Fundy.

The Alaska Sea Grant College Program is a marine research, education and outreach service headquartered at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences. It is funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in partnership with the state of Alaska and private industry.

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