By Brandi Williams, LifeSmarts Program Assistant
With a format that closely resembles the National LifeSmarts Championship, the Virginia LifeSmarts Competition is a fast-paced, energy-packed event that is fun to both watch and be a part of. The Virginia LifeSmarts competition was held on March 5 in Richmond, just 100 miles away from the National Consumers League’s Washington, DC office. I kept my fingers crossed all the way there, in hopes that I’d brought along the right shoes – the Virginia LifeSmarts Coalition, which coordinates the state program, puts everyone to work!
Virginia LifeSmarts held its 15th state competition at the Virginia Commonwealth University campus located in downtown Richmond. Hosting 11 teams and running up to five competition rooms simultaneously, Virginia’s competition was a busy one that required the combined efforts of coalition members and volunteers to run smoothly and effectively. The LifeSmarts Coalition, headed by Dr. Celia Hayhoe of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech), recruited and coordinated more than 30 volunteers to officiate in competition rooms.
As each match increased in difficulty, the final round of competition was between George C. Marshall High School and Maggie Walker Governor’s School. Teams in the audience cheered these surviving two teams on, as they battled it out for the state title. At the end of a nail-biting match, the Maggie Walker Green Dragons eventually took the Virginia State Champion title.
Teams and officials were particularly excited to have the Honorable Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II, Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Virginia, officiate as Question Master for the final round of competition. General Cuccinelli was a natural first-time QM, making sure that the top two teams were at ease on the final match stage. Question Master for the semi-final rounds of competition was Assistant Attorney General Courtney Malveaux, a long-time supporter of LifeSmarts and regular volunteer official at the Virginia LifeSmarts competition.