While the nation’s focus turns to science this week with the March for Science and Earth Day on Saturday, I’ll be spending it with the next generation of scientists and science-literate citizens at the 20th annual National Ocean Sciences Bowl Finals Competition in Corvallis, Oregon. I’m excited to see our regional champions come together and vie for the national title over the weekend – expanding their ocean science knowledge, learning about career opportunities, going on educational field trips, and making friends along the way. As we educate the NOSB students, some of whom may well be our nation’s future leaders, we choose themes that are timely and will continue to be relevant in the future. This year’s theme is “Blue Energy: Powering the Planet with our Ocean.” Marine renewable energy (generated from the continuous movement of surface winds, tides, and currents, as well as differences in salinity and temperature) is an important solution to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, ensuring our ocean remains healthy and productive while helping to meet the world’s growing energy demand. I’m really looking forward to this year’s Finals, knowing I will be inspired (again) by our next generation of ocean-literate citizens and scientists. I also want to thank Oregon State University for hosting this year’s event.
It’s pretty amazing to think that this competition has been going on for 20 years – we owe a huge debt of gratitude to Admiral James Watkins and Dr. Rick Spinrad (who will be speaking at this year’s Finals) for developing the NOSB. Are you one of the 30,000 students who have been involved with the NOSB over the last two decades? If so, make sure you’re taking advantage of this broad alumni network and unique opportunities that you could be a part of by joining the new NOSB Alumni LinkedIn group.
If you’re in the Corvallis area, I encourage you to come down to OSU and join us at the competition! But don’t worry if you’re not, you can keep score by following along on Twitter (@NOSBRocks), Facebook, Instagram, and Tumblr, using #NOSB17 and #NOSBturns20. We’ll be taking a brief hiatus from the newsletter next week, so make sure to check social media or our website to find out who the 2017 NOSB champs are (and tune in the following Monday to read Ocean News Weekly as usual)!
RADM Jonathan W. White, USN (ret.)
President and CEO
Consortium for Ocean Leadership