More than 30 teams of middle school students from across the area will converge on West Texas A&M University Saturday for a competition that will test their mental mettle.
The students, who hail from 15 schools across the Panhandle, have been preparing for months to compete in the Science Bowl competition, which challenges students to answer questions in math and science for prizes, prestige and the right to represent the area at the national competition in Washington, D.C.
Pantex has sponsored the bowl for more than 20 years in hopes of fostering a love of science and math in the youth of the Texas Panhandle.
“This is one of our favorite times of the year, when we get to see so many talented and dedicated youngsters compete in Science Bowl,” said Debra Halliday, science bowl coordinator. “These are the students who will make up the next generation of engineers and scientists, so it’s important we foster a love of learning in them.”
More than 100 Pantex employees and community volunteers will be on hand to help run the Science Bowl. The competition features teams of four students answering science and math questions in a round-robin format, followed by a double elimination round after lunch. The winner of Saturday’s event will be eligible to travel to Washington to compete with dozens of other teams from across the U.S. for the national title.
This year, the Education Credit Union has joined B&W Pantex in sponsoring the event.
Media is invited to attend the Science Bowl starting at 12:30 p.m. Saturday in the Classroom Center at West Texas A&M University. Media will be able to film or photograph the competition, and interviews with contestants and volunteers will be available. Please come to room 401 and ask for Greg Cunningham. The competition will run from 12:30 p.m. through the final round, which starts at 4 p.m., followed by an awards ceremony. The official Twitter Hashtag for the event will be #PXSB
In addition to bragging rights and a shot at the national title, the winning team will earn $1,000 for its school’s science program, with $500 and $250 going to the second and third place schools. Last year, Canyon Junior High School won the regional competition.
Schools participating in this year’s Pantex Middle School Science Bowl are:
Bonham Middle School
Bovina Middle School
Bushland Middle School
Canyon Junior High School
Clarendon Junior High School
Dumas Junior High School
Friona Junior High School
Higgins Junior High School
Highland Park Middle School
Lazbuddie Junior High School
Lorenzo De Zavala Middle School
Panhandle Junior High School
St. Andrew’s Episcopal School