LHS student wins scholarship to talk oil spills

July 23, 2010

By Jim HIney

Lubbock High School senior and National Ocean Sciences Bowl competitor Grant Curry has received a scholarship to participate in the Ocean Science and Leadership Expedition (OSLE) in Alaska Aug. 5-14.

The OSLE, hosted by the Prince William Sound Science Center (PWSSC) in Cordova, Alaska, is a 10-day intensive learning experience for high school students focusing on understanding ocean science and cultivating stewardship of ocean resources.

Curry is one of four students from the Gulf Coast who were awarded $1,500 scholarships. The PWSSC sought these students so they can share their experiences related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill with their peers from across the country.

During this year’s OSLE, 10 students from seven states will work with Alaskan marine scientists and educators to learn about—and experience firsthand— oceanographic principles and issues such as oil spills, marine debris and climate change.

As a junior, Curry competed on one of two teams LHS fielded for the Dolphin Challenge Regional Competition of the National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB). The Dolphin Challenge, hosted by the Texas Sea Grant College Program, is held annually at Texas A&M University in College Station.

NOSB is a rigorous academic competition for high school students is modeled after the National Science Bowl. Students demonstrate their knowledge of marine and coastal science by answering questions about biology, physics, chemistry, geology, geography, mathematics and the social sciences. The winning teams from each of 25 regional competitions advance to the two-day national competition. The Dolphin Challenge is one of two regional competitions held in Texas. The other Texas competition, the Loggerhead Challenge, is also hosted by Texas Sea Grant and is held in Corpus Christi.

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Texas Sea Grant is a unique partnership that unites the resources of the federal government, the State of Texas and universities across the state to create knowledge, tools, products and services that benefit the economy, the environment and the citizens of Texas. It is administered through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and is one of 33 university-based Sea Grant Programs around the country. Texas Sea Grant is a non-academic research center in the College of Geosciences at Texas A&M University. The program’s mission is to improve the understanding, wise use and stewardship of Texas coastal and marine resources.