Bishop Beebury

Matthew Petillo

Due to insufficient interest and a bit of stage fright among middle schoolers, there will be no traditional Geography Bee this year. The tradition, however, will continue in some form when teachers and high schoolers participate in a mock bee during Grudge Match in March, in lieu of the typical lower school competition. Although the details have yet to be ironed out, prospective participants should expect questions similar to those used in the official National Geographic Bee.

Faculty member Sara Asher came up with the idea after a lack of enthusiasm among her middle school students forced her to cancel the official bee, which she has coordinated in the past.  “I was having to practically beg middle school students to participate in the school level bee after participating in the class bees,” she says. “When I mentioned this in journalism class, some of the high schoolers became nostalgic about the geography bee.” 

Junior Audrey Nguyen-Hoang, the student in charge of coordinating the bee, became interested after Ms. Asher explained the official bee’s cancellation. “Remembering how excited and competitive my grade was when we had the option,” says Nguyen-Hoang, “I wanted to bring that energy back to the bee, specifically because I know that we have a lot of high schoolers who still are interested in history and geography, and that’s why we have interest in things like Scholars Bowl and Academic WorldQuest.” She hopes that the novelty of the nontraditional bee will make it particularly “fun to watch.”