August 23, 2019

Huntingtown Big Winner at Computer Bowl

Computer Bowl
Huntingtown High School in Calvert County was the first-place team at the SMECO Computer Bowl on March 2. From left are Brayden Archer, Nick Matthews, coach Tom Currier, Quintin Hilton, and Ethan Hilton.

Huntingtown High School took first place at the 30th annual Southern Maryland High School Computer Bowl on March 2. The Computer Bowl was established and is now supported by Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative.

The event is the perfect example of SMECO’s commitment to supporting

Computer Bowl

Great Mills High School in St. Mary’s County was the second-place team, including, from left, coach Nora Blasko, Nicholas Zhou, Finnegan O’Neill, and Zoe Coughlan. Not shown is team member Sam Wilson.

technical education in the region. Competing in the Computer Bowl underscores the importance of computer skills for students who understand they need to become proficient in technical and industrial fields. Now that information technology is firmly embedded in daily life, electric utilities like SMECO rely heavily on computerization to help keep the lights on for every customer. Learning by competing in the Computer Bowl can help get students ready for careers like software development and cybersecurity.

The Computer Bowl was held at North Point High School in Charles County this year. The event featured 80 young computer experts in a test of their technical knowledge and coding skills. Sponsors for the annual competition are SMECO, the College of Southern Maryland, Booz Allen Hamilton, and the public school systems of Calvert, Charles, and St. Mary’s counties.

Computer Bowl

The third-place team was North Point High School in Charles County. From left are Caleb Griffith, Christian Parrales, coach Melody Stahl, Matteo Marchi, and Erik Henson.

Twenty teams from 10 Southern Maryland high schools took on the challenging literacy and programming tests in the Computer Bowl. In the first round of the competition, students completed a written test of their knowledge of computer history, software, and hardware. In round two, teams of three to four students wrote computer programs that solved specific problems, using programming languages like Java and Python.

The technology used in the Computer Bowl has evolved dramatically since the

Computer Bowl

The fourth-place team from Huntingtown High School in Calvert County included, from left, Evan Fee, Kenny Cullum, coach Tom Currier, Arin Crow, and Margaret Foulkes.

first event in 1990. SMECO hosted the bowl that year, offering large, terminal-type computers for the programming portion of the competition. Organizers loaded the programs onto the machines from floppy disks. For the 2019 competition, Charles County Public Schools equipped each team with two laptops, accompanied by modern software for writing code.

A team from Huntingtown High School in Calvert County won first place this year, with members Brayden Archer, Ethan Hilton, Quintin Hilton, and Nick Matthews coached by Tom Currier. Great Mills High School in St. Mary’s County won second place, with Nora Blasko coaching Zoe Coughlan, Finnegan O’Neill, Sam Wilson, and Nicholas Zhou. The host school, North Point High School, had a team place third; Melody Stahl coached Caleb Griffith, Erik Henson, Matteo Marchi, and Christian Parrales. In fourth place was another team from Huntingtown High, made up of Arin Crow, Kenny Cullum, Evan Fee, and Margaret Foulkes.

The winning teams received plaques and trophies, and SMECO awarded gift cards to the top four teams. The College of Southern Maryland also provided the first-place winners with performance awards.

Booz Allen Hamilton employees Janet Bondelid, Shannon Katulich, Amanda Foxton, Stephen Katulich, Jr., Christopher Mucciolo, Nathan McClain, Douglas Sanborn, and Teresa Sukhram were the judges for the competition, along with Joe Burgin from the College of Southern Maryland and Casey Cooke from SMECO. Lora Bennett and John Stine with Charles County Public Schools developed the literacy and programming tests used in the competition.

To learn more about SMECO, visit its Leader member page.

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