This is Fish Radio. I’m Stephanie Mangini. Hands on your buzzers, it’s Ocean Science Jeopardy. More after this…
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High School students from all over the state are bringing their ocean science smarts to the 17th annual Alaska Tsunami Bowl in Seward. Alaska is one out of the twenty-five regions in the United States to  competing. Eighteen teams are battling for a seat at the National Ocean Science Bowl.
“It is an academic competition. Four students and an optional alternate will compete against each other two teams at a time.”
Phyllis Shoemaker is the regional coordinator for the competition. The teams are challenges with science questions, Jeopardy style.
” They have a moderator that asks them questions, and the first team that buzzes in get the first opportunity to answers the questions ,and if they get it right they get a bonus question. If they get it wrong the other team has a chance to answer.”
 Most of tournament  is made up of quick buzzer questions, the other  a team Challenge round.
“Part of the competition is more in-depth critical thinking questions that the students do themselves. They are written out and they work on them as a team and turn in their answers; which are then graded by scientists.”
There is also an oral portion the students must present at the Tsunami Bowl. This separates Alaska from the other regions competing.
“Alaska is unique among the 25 regions because we require a research project.We assign them a topic with one general theme. This year they where suppose to address one problem in the ocean and come up with solutions to it.”
A few research projects  are, bilge dumping in Cook Inlet, invasive species and tidal power. The winning team will go to the national ocean science bowl held in Seattle early May. Last year Juneau’s Douglas High school came in at third place at Nationals and holds the record for the most wins at the Tsunami Bowl. They will be going after the title again against teams from Homer, Dillingham, Cordova, Kodiak, Unalaska and many more.
“I would encourage any body that is in the Seward area during the weekend of February 28th to March 2nd to come up to Seward High School and watch the kids in action. We always have a wonderful bunch of students and it is really fun to watch them compete. People say its just as exciting as watching a championship basketball game.”
Learn more about the Ocean Science Bowl at or find links at our website

Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods, celebrating 101 years of partnership with Alaska’s coastal communities.  In Kodiak, I’m Stephanie Mangini.