Local student receives $1,000 college scholarship from National Ocean Sciences Bowl


by Allison Hays

Who knew an ocean sciences competition could help pay for college? One of last year’s Clallam Bay High School graduates, Kathleen Gonzalez, can tell you all about that. In 2017, Kathleen devoted hours of time preparing her team for their first-ever National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) competition, the regional Orca Bowl.

Kathleen was one of five students awarded a one-time, $1,000 scholarship for NOSB competitors who have ocean-science based aspirations for their future. The NOSB, a program of the Washington, D.C.-based Consortium for Ocean Leadership, has been awarding scholarships for over a decade through their National Ocean Scholarship Program.

In addition to her focus on the NOSB, Kathleen also spent her senior year taking college courses to supplement her high school work and served as president of her school’s Environmental Club, where she spent time on community volunteer projects such as beach cleanups and invasive species’ removals.

Participating in the NOSB resulted in a new-found interest in ocean science and a desire to pursue an oceanography degree. She is attending the University of Washington, Bothell campus and majoring in oceanography.

As Kathleen learns more through her college education, she hopes to educate others on the importance of the ocean, opening their eyes to a new interest or career choice.

The other 2017 NOSB scholarship winners are Sarah Kwartler (from Lake Oswego, Oregon who is attending Duke University), Alex Miller (from Seattle, Washington, who is attending the Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Sofya Pesternikova (from Lafayette, California who is attending Dalhousie University), and John “Jack” Urquhart (from Saline, Michigan who is attending the University of Miami).

About National Ocean Sciences Bowl

The National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) is a program of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership based in Washington, D.C. Now in its 20th year, the NOSB inspires students to pursue a college degree and future career in the ocean sciences. Through this educational forum, the NOSB introduces students, teachers, schools, and communities to ocean sciences as an interdisciplinary field of study and a possible career path. Most high school students do not have the opportunity to study ocean science as part of their formal coursework, which makes the NOSB one of the only ways students gain exposure to this field. Many past NOSB participants have moved on to pursue college degrees and careers in ocean science, helping to solve the growing environmental, economic and security issues facing our ocean and planet.

About Consortium for Ocean Leadership

The Consortium for Ocean Leadership (COL) is a Washington, D.C. nonprofit organization that represents the leading public and private ocean research education institutions, aquaria, and industry with the mission to shape the future of ocean science and technology. In addition to its advocacy role as the voice of the ocean research and technology community, COL manages a variety of community-wide research and education programs in areas of ocean observing, ocean exploration, and ocean partnerships.