Call for Volunteers to Officiate Va. Regional Science Bowls

The 2019 National Science Bowl season is right around the corner, and Jefferson Lab's Science Education team is seeking volunteers to help with the two events. The Virginia Regional High School Science Bowl is set for Saturday, Feb. 2, and the Virginia Regional Middle School Science Bowl will follow on Saturday, March 2.

The National Science Bowl® competition, sponsored annually by the U.S. Department of Energy since 1991, is a highly visible series of academic competitions among teams of students. The Science Bowl is an academic competition among teams of students who compete in a verbal forum to solve technical problems and answer questions in all branches of science and math. Each team is made up of four or five students, and one or two teachers who serve as advisor and coach.

Volunteer support is essential to the success of both events, and more than 50 volunteers will be needed to run each event. Most of the volunteers perform as competition moderators, rules and scientific judges, timekeepers and scorekeepers during the morning, round-robin sessions. A smaller number of volunteers are needed to run the afternoon double-elimination matches. Morning shifts run from 8:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m., the entire day lasts from 8:15 a.m.-4:15 p.m. 

"We've already reached out to past volunteers, but we are always looking for enthusiastic new people to join the Science Bowl volunteer pool,” says Steve Gagnon, a Science Education staff member and Va. Regional Science Bowl event coordinator. "Volunteers will receive a t-shirt, a goodie bag, a yummy lunch, and a great day! Also, feel free to forward this to your closest co-workers, friends, family, pet groomer, UPS delivery person, dental hygienist, etc. Almost anyone (over age 13) may also assist with the many activities required to conduct these tournaments."

Volunteers are asked to use this link to sign up for one or both events

Most of the public areas and conference rooms of CEBAF Center will be taken over on each of the competition days.

The top three teams from each event will earn cash prizes for their respective schools. The top high school and middle school teams will also win expenses-paid trips to the DOE National Science Bowl Finals planned for April 25-29 in Washington, D.C.

Anyone interested in more information or in volunteering may contact Gagnon at

"If you are new to the Science Bowl, I'll be happy to explain all of the specifics to you," Gagnon says.

For more information about the science bowl competition, how a match runs, and the duties of volunteers, see the DOE training information. You may also view the 2018 DOE National Science Bowl High School Championship to see what a match looks like.

The afternoon semi-final and final rounds held in the CEBAF Center auditorium will be open to the public.

Science Bowl Training/Refresher and Practice Sessions

Training/Refresher Session
Friday, Jan. 25: Bldg. 28, Support Service Center room 72 at 10 a.m.

Practice session for the high school science bowl:
Feb. 1 (Friday): CEBAF Center room F113 at 9 a.m.

Practice session for the middle school science bowl:
March 1 (Friday): CEBAF Center room F113 at 9 a.m.