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Press Release

Barbara Laskin

St. Louis Park Student Wins 2007 MN State Geographic Bee

St. Paul, Minn. - Andrew Ford, an eighth-grade student from St. Louis Park Jr. High School in St. Louis Park, Minn., won first place in the 2007 Minnesota finals of the National Geographic Bee held today at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn.  Ford received a $100 cash prize and a globe.  His teacher, Susan Blankenship, received a world atlas.

Ford will represent Minnesota at the National Geographic Bee, May 22-23, 2007, in Washington, D.C.  The national winner will receive a $25,000 college scholarship. The event is sponsored by the National Geographic Society and JPMorgan Chase.

Aditya Venkataraman, a seventh-grade student at The Blake School in Hopkins, Minn., was the second-place winner.  Venkataraman received a $75 prize and a globe.  Venkataraman’s teacher, Robert Zelle, received a world atlas. 

Coming in third place was Billy S. Thomas, a seventh-grade student at Dakota Hills Middle School in Eagan, Minn. Thomas received a $50 prize and a globe.  Thomas’ teacher, Kim Hill, received a world atlas.
All Geographic Bee participants received T-shirts and certificates.

This year’s winning question was: “The Kola Peninsula separates the Barents Sea from which body of water that is connected by a canal system to the Baltic Sea?”  Answer:  the White Sea.
One hundred fourth-eighth graders competed in the preliminary round, answering a variety of questions about world geography. The top 10 scorers advanced to the final round. The tournament included oral and written questions. KARE-11 News Anchor Julie Nelson moderated the final round of this year’s competition.

Macalester College, founded in 1874, is a national liberal arts college with a full-time enrollment of 1,884 students. Macalester is nationally recognized for its long-standing commitment to academic excellence, internationalism, multiculturalism and civic engagement.