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John Jay Middle School Students Take Part In Geography Bee

John Jay Middle School’s 10 Geography Bee participants with teacher Barbara Kessler.
John Jay Middle School’s 10 Geography Bee participants with teacher Barbara Kessler. Photo Credit: Contributed
John Jay Middle School’s Alex Stark won the 2015 Geography Bee and a chance to compete at the state level.
John Jay Middle School’s Alex Stark won the 2015 Geography Bee and a chance to compete at the state level. Photo Credit: Contributed

LEWISBORO, N.Y. -- John Jay Middle School’s entire student body recently gathered to witness the annual Geography Bee.

“Seventh-and eighth-grade students took a preliminary exam last week,” said teacher Barbara Kessler, who has been overseeing the Bee for 15 years.

The 10 highest scorers -- Annika Carlson, Matthew Collins, Orion Cummings, Ethan Falconer, Terence Kelly, Eliza Leddy, Conor Roberts, McQuaid Shin, Alex Stark and Ryan Wallick -- were invited to the stage for the schoolwide competition, with questions about United States and global geography provided by the National Geographic Society.

“All of the participants seemed to be really involved mentally,” Kessler said. “They all took it very seriously.”

After a competitive double-elimination round, Stark was named the school's Geography Bee winner, with Collins and Falconer taking second- and third-place honors, respectively.

Stark will complete a qualifying test for a chance to advance to the state level of the competition, where the top 100 scorers for the entire state will compete to represent the state at the National Geography Bee in Washington, D.C. in the spring.

The winner of the national competitions receives a $50,000 college scholarship and a trip for four to the Galapagos Islands, among other prizes.

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