By Austin Brown, news editor
On January 29, the Hi-Q team traveled to South Side High School to participate in the National History Bowl and Bee for the first time. And at the end of the day, junior Sydney Kightlinger had placed sixth and qualified for the National History Bee Championship, which will be held this weekend in Arlington, Virginia at the Crystal Gateway Hotel. “I am really excited, but I am not sure if I know anything,” said Kightlinger.
Inspired by his experience on the game show, “Jeopardy,” David Madden, Executive Director, founded the National History Bee and Bowl in 2010. The program was founded ” to help improve students` knowledge of history and analytical skills,” said Madden. Formatted similar to “Jeopardy,” the fast paced competition sports many difficult
questions ranging in difficulty from obscure to detailed. Madden stressed the difficulty of the questions, “Students need to prepare significantly to expand their knowledge of history.”
Most of the questions are short paragraphs read to about 6-10 students. When the student buzzes this locks the other students out. However, students can only buzz once, so that is the strategy of the game. Do you buzz earlier and hope you know the answer or wait in hopes of fully comprehending the question? Two thousand competitors and spectators are expected to attend the event.
Kightlinger has been rigorously studying for the competition, “I am just going to keep on doing what I’ve been doing. I am a big history nerd. With trivia, you just have to make sure that you know your facts.” However, as the first ever qualifier from our school to participate in this event, there are many uncertainties going into this weekend. “I have no idea what is going to happen. I just hope I do not bring dishonor to the family,” said Kightlinger. Madden emphasized that just participating in a competition at this level is an honor. “No matter what you win. As it is an opportunity to expand your horizons while learning more about history.”
Whatever the results, Saegertown will be cheering for her all the way. Saegertown Hi-Q coach Stacey Hetrick said, “It is remarkable. We never attended that event before, and then Sydney qualified for the National Bee Championship. I wish her well, and I wish that I could go with her.”