January 25, 2010

Top High School Students Compete in Blue Lobster Bowl at MIT

MIT Sea Grant College Program NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: January 20, 2010

Contacts:
Andrea Cohen, MIT Sea Grant: 617-253-3461; alcohen@mit.edu
Jordan Lewis, MIT Center for Ocean Engineering: 617-324-3558; lewisjb@mit.edu

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - A sea slug by another name is A) a sea anemone; B) a coral polyp; C) a nudibranch; or D) a sea urchin?

If you slammed down on the buzzer first and called out C, or nudibranch-, you've got a sense of what the region's top science students will be doing at the annual Blue Lobster Bowl (BLB) to be held at MIT on Saturday, February 6, 2010.

The event is part of The National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB), a program of the Consortium for Oceanographic Leadership, based in Washington, DC. The NOSB seeks to inspire and challenge students and to encourage and support the next generation of marine scientists, policy makers, teachers, explorers, researchers, technicians, environmental advocates and informed citizens.

Twenty-four teams of students from Massachusetts high schools will answer quick buzzer questions and more complex team challenge questions in areas such as biology, marine science, chemistry, and ocean engineering. The winning team will advance to the NOSB finals in St. Petersburg, Florida, where they will compete against 24 other regional winners from April 23-25. In 2009, the Lexington High School team took first place in the BLB and second place in the NOSB finals. Approximately 2,000 students from over 300 U.S. high schools are expected to participate this year.

Thanks to the software program created by Caine Jette, a junior in MIT's Computer Science Department, the BLB and many other regional bowls will go paperless this year, with plans for all regional bowls to eschew paper next year.

Massachusetts teams will include students and teachers with a strong interest in marine science from Bedford High School, Belmont High School, Brookline High School, Cambridge Rindge & Latin School, Chelmsford High School, Lexington High School, Lincoln-Sudbury Regional High School, Newton North High School, Newton South High School, North Andover High School, Philips Academy and Weymouth High School.

This event is co-sponsored by The MIT Sea Grant College Program, The MIT Center for Ocean Engineering, and The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. The Blue Lobster Bowl begins at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, February 6, 2010, in MIT Building 26, Lobby 100. Volunteers and spectators are welcome. For more information, see http://bluelobsterbowl.mit.edu .