September 26, 2002
SENIOR STACY LEE TO REPRESENT
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
COLLEGE JEOPARDY! CHAMPIONSHIP
Annual Tournament Slated
to Air November 11-25
Editor's note: Photos of Stacey
Lee are available as 300-dpi jpegs. Email Marti Hobbes at firstname.lastname@example.org
NORTHAMPTON, Mass.-Smith College senior
Stacy Lee will be put to an intellectual test of a slightly different
nature than the classroom typically offers when she competes
in this year's College Jeopardy! Championship, facing off against
14 other students from universities and colleges around the country
to prove her trivia prowess and defend Smith's honor.
Lee, who is completing a major in mathematics and a minor in
East Asian languages and literature, was selected from an applicant
pool of thousands to compete in the 2002 College Jeopardy! Championship.
It will be taped Oct. 5-6 at Ohio State University and will air
nationwide Nov. 11-22, 2002.
An avid fan of the show, Lee decided on a whim to enter her name
into the applicant pool through a form on the Jeopardy! Web site.
After watching the show for years, she said, "I'd always
thought that I could do better than the contestants."
To her surprise, she received an invitation to take the 50-question
general knowledge test that serves as a prerequisite for advancing
in the audition process. Lee also went through a two-minute practice
game against two other potential contestants, as well as an interview
with show personnel in which she told producers that the show's
$50,000 grand prize would likely be put toward paying off her
student loans and traveling.
Lee didn't expect that anything would come of the audition process,
but she soon received a call from the show's producers, inviting
her to appear on the College Championship.
"They called my cell phone," she recalled, "and
I was in the middle of a restaurant with some friends, so there
was lots of screaming when I picked up the phone."
Jeopardy! producers are flying Lee to Columbus, Ohio, for the
contest, in which five episodes will be taped each day. A highlight
of the trip, she says, will be visiting a friend who attends
Ohio State University and who has promised to be in the audience
while she competes.
Lee has been reluctant to tell people of her upcoming appearance
on the show, both because she doesn't want a lot of pressure
to do well from friends and family and because she won't be able
to discuss the show's results until after it airs. The people
she has told have been mostly enthusiastic, though Lee notes
that her parents, Wendy and Henry Lee of Bellerose, New York,
"Because I'll be missing classes for the taping, my mom
asked me if I would be turning Jeopardy! down in order to go
to class," she said, but Stacy expects that they'll be more
excited when she actually appears on the show.
Not unexpectedly, Lee also admits to being somewhat nervous about
"There are always episodes where one person gets all the
questions right," she said, "and I'm afraid of going
up against someone like that and losing."
-- 30 --
But no matter the show's outcome, Lee will have an attentive
viewing audience when the show airs in Nov. as well as some degree
of campus celebrity. The appearance of a Smith sweatshirt on
national television will likely be enough to guarantee plenty
of recognition and many congratulations.