Patriots Science Bowl Team qualifies for nationals

MADISON – The Science Bowl Team at Bob Jones High School edged out formidable competitors, including a group from James Clemens High School, to claim the National Science Bowl regional title and qualify to enter national competition.

Because of COVID-19 constraints, students used Zoom software for the regional competition.

“In a normal year, students go head-to-head against another team and buzz in to answer the questions first,” team coach and science teacher Mary-Katherine Maguire said. “This year, students just had to answer a certain number of questions in a given amount of time to earn points. The team with the most points each round wins the competition.”

The 2020-2021 Bob Jones team included Aubteen Pour Biazar, Neha Chopade, Puja Chopade, Thomas Nguyen and Justin Pan. Team coaches are Maguire and Shubham Chopade, parent of two team members.

National Science Bowl checks students’ knowledge of diverse categories of science, like physics, biology, chemistry, math, energy and geology. The Department of Energy or DOE created the National Science Bowl in 1991 to encourage students to excel in mathematics and science and to pursue careers in these fields.

The department’s goal of influencing students to engage in science activities has succeeded, because the DOE figures show that approximately 315,000 students have participated in the National Science Bowl throughout its 30-year history. The test is one of the country’s major science competitions, according to Julia Wilhide, a senior at Bob Jones who originally researched this article for “Patriot Pages.” (bjhspatriotpages.com)

“Bob Jones Science Bowl finished in the top four at the regional competition for the National Oceanic Science Bowl. This was our first time competing in this contest, so it was a great experience and great showing for Bob Jones,” Maguire said. “I’m so proud of the dedication these students have to science.”

“Their dedication to science paid off, and now they have the opportunity to showcase their knowledge at the national level,” Maguire said.

Depending on CDC guidelines, the national competition may be virtual or in-person. If students can compete in person, the contest will be held in Washington D.C. on April 29 – May 3. For a virtual format, preliminary rounds will occur in April and the championship on May 22.

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