Student Life

UWF team wins first place at 2024 Southeastern Psychological Association quiz bowl

A University of West Florida undergraduate team won the first annual quiz bowl challenge at the 2024 Southeastern Psychological Association Annual Meeting, held March 13-16 in Orlando, Fla. The team, “Dead Sirius,” competed against 10 other teams from colleges and universities throughout the Southeast, including Rollins College and University of Tampa.

“We have a lot of good, hardworking students at our university and in our department, so it was fun to give them an opportunity to show off what they can do,” said Dr. Lisa Blalock, professor in the Department of Psychology.

UWF undergraduate students Elizabeth Black, Ashley Martin, Landon Nelson and Clark Tipton and alumna Brooke Simila completed three rounds of psychology knowledge questions and one Harry Potter-themed fun round. The team was guided by Blalock and fellow psychology professor Dr. Jane Halonen. 

The team took preparing for the event very seriously. They held a practice session several weeks in advance and studied for the entire seven-hour drive from Pensacola to Orlando.

“My teammates were not confident going into it, and I think it’s because they’re all over-achievers. It’s like one of those things where you go into a test not feeling confident, and then you come out of it with a 95,” Tipton said.

The event’s genesis was a verbal “smack talk” between Halonen and a faculty member from Georgia College and State University. The quiz bowl included questions such as “What is the name of one of the few psychologists who won a Nobel Prize?” (Pavlov). 

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