DOE Office of Science's National Science Bowl Regional Saturday in Pittsburgh

Pennsylvania high school students will begin their quest to win the National Science Bowl, hosted by the Energy Department's Office of Science, Saturday in Pittsburgh.

On February 23, bright high school students from across southwestern Pennsylvania will compete in a regional competition of the National Science Bowl, which the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science hosts annually to encourage today's youth to pursue careers in science and math. This year's regional competition for southwestern Pennsylvania begins this Saturday morning at the National Energy Technology Laboratory in Pittsburgh.

Since its inception 23 years ago, the Office of Science's National Science Bowl has attracted more than 225,000 students and has become one of the nation's largest science competitions. This year, about 9,500 more high school students and 4,500 middle school students are expected to engage, many of whom will likely go on to become scientists and teachers, engineers and leaders. But first, the students will have to win through the battle of wits, and that won't be easy.

In the regional competitions, teams of four students each will be faced with tough mathematical problems and tested on their knowledge of a vast number of areas, including astronomy, biology, Earth science and physics. Regional winners will earn fully-paid trips to Washington, D.C. for the National Finals, scheduled for April 25-29. There, the students will be tested with more difficult questions, as well as a car race (for middle school competitors) and a science challenge (for high school students). The national champions will receive pretty amazing prizes.

Although the prizes will be much sought after, the real value of the Science Bowl is in the habits of discipline and deferred gratification that all of the students learn along the way; the necessity of hitting the books instead of the mall (see http://science.energy.gov/news/in-focus/2012/12-12-12/). Those hard-won habits of mind - and will - are likely to make the students successful in life long after the Finals are over. And that's what the National Science Bowl is really all about.

So let the battle of wits begin, and come out this Saturday to cheer on your favorite team!


DOE's Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit http://science.energy.gov/, and for more information about the National Science Bowl, please visit http://science.energy.gov/wdts/nsb/.

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Robert Edward Healy, III February 19, 2013 at 05:05 PM
Baldwin High School's competition site this Saturday is CCAC-South in West Mifflin.
Brian Rampolla February 21, 2013 at 07:52 PM
BHS has two teams registered, but you sure wouldn't know it from the lack of publicity. No mention was made in Dr. Lutz's recent Superintendents Report on Education, which is on the front page of the district website, and there's no mention on the high school Science Club page. By the way, Harrison is not registered for the middle school competition on March 2. The parents of current high school and 8th grade middle school students should take a long, hard look at the Science/STEM education portion of Dr. Lutz's report, because there's not a single reference to high school initiatives, other than hosting of the recent PJAS competition (in which there was only 1 BHS entrant). There discussion about a bridge from the elementary to middle schools, which is great, but what is so much more critical is the bridge from middle school to high school, because any elementary and middle school STEM progress goes completely to waste without an aggressive, imaginative, innovative STEM program at the high school. BHS students deserve, and their parents should be demanding, such a program because good STEM skills are pretty much mandatory these days for post secondary school success regardless of whether it's an associates degree, 4 year degree, or trade school. And, sad to say, it's pretty clear that no one on the BW board will take any action on their own to address this issue without parents, and students, physically attending board meetings and making their demands known.


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