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2012-2013 Academic WorldQuest

Academic WorldQuest is a global affairs and U.S. foreign policy-based knowledge competition. Every year, over 4,000 high school students across the U.S. participate in local WorldQuest competitions hosted by their World Affairs Council. The winners of each local competition travels to Washington, DC for the National Competition. This year's National Competition will host over 40 teams from across the country from Hawaii and Alaska to Florida. The competition consists of teams of four students answering 100 questions over ten rounds. This year's categories can be seen below.

The Academic WorldQuest National Competition over the weekend was  a huge success. Congratulations to all teams, coaches, parents, and councils who attended. Special congratulations to the winning teams:


National Champion
Plano West Senior High School 
World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth 
Jeffrey Chang, Samuel Cheng, Jonathan Huang, Carlos Molina, and coach John Scott


Second Place
Community School of Naples 
Naples Council on World Affairs 
Max Bressler, Mark McElwaine, Kara Bressler, Jose Sandoval, and coach Ruth Wahl


Third Place
Maggie L. Walker Governor's School 
World Affairs Council of Greater Richmond 
Christopher Benos, Christine Gao, John Metz, alternate Kevin Yuan, co-captain Matthew King, and coach Brenda Ericson


The weekend got off to a great start with the evening panel, From Graduation to DC: Paths to a Career in Foreign Policy featuring Kelsey Hartigan, Program Officer, International Program, Nuclear Threat Initiative; Adam Johnson, English Language Officer, International Visitor Leadership Program, U.S. Department of State, and Associate Director, External Relations, Young Professionals in Foreign Policy; Jackie Quinones, Africa Expert, Democratic Staff, House Foreign Affairs Committee; and moderator Bill Clifford, President & CEO, WorldBoston. An evening reception followed.
The World Affairs Councils of America thanks its sponsors ExxonMobil, who has been a long-standing sponsor of the Academic WorldQuest National Competition; supporting sponsors Merrill Lynch - Mr. Michael Phillip, New Mind Education, and the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State; and Gallup Education, who is offering each student of the winning team a free subscription to their Gallup WorldView tool, which provides access to all data from their World Poll. WACA also thanks Georgetown University for hosting receptions for the Academic WorldQuest competitors, to moderator David Rothkopf and Foreign Policy, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and to Weber Shandwick for acting as communications sponsor.


National Competition Event Details:


Georgetown University Hotel and Conference Center (Leavey Center)
3800 Reservoir Road Northwest, Washington, DC 20007


Friday, April 26

12:00 PM - 3:30 PM: Registration (teams may stop by to register at any time during this period)

West Lobby 

5:00 PM - 6:00 PM: Panel Discussion: From Graduation to DC: Paths to a Career in Foreign Policy 

Kelsey Hartigan, Program Officer, International Program, Nuclear Threat Initiative

Adam Johnson, English Language Officer, International Visitor Leadership Program, U.S. Department of State, and Associate Director, External Relations, Young Professionals in Foreign Policy

Jackie Quinones, Africa Expert, Democratic Staff, House Foreign Affairs Committee

Moderator: Bill Clifford, President & CEO, WorldBoston

Panelist Bios

Salons CHF

6:00 PM - 7:00 PM: Welcome Reception 

South Gallery

Saturday, April 27

8:30 AM - 1:00 PM: Competition (lunch for participating students included)

Salons ABG 

Dress Code:

Business Casual (No Jeans)

National Competition Rules 

Moderator: David Rothkopf, CEO and Editor-at-Large, Foreign Policy

David Rothkopf is the CEO and Editor-at-Large of Foreign Policy. His new book, Power, Inc.: The Epic Rivalry Between Big Business and Government and the Reckoning that Lies Ahead, was published by Farrar, Straus & Giroux on March 1. He is also the author of Superclass: The Global Power Elite and the World They are Making, now available in over two dozen editions worldwide, and Running the World: The Inside Story of the National Security Council and the Architects of American Power, hailed by the New York Times as "the definitive history of the National Security Council."

Rothkopf is President and CEO of Garten Rothkopf, an international advisory firm specializing in transformational trends especially those associated with energy choice and climate change, emerging markets, and global risk. He is a visiting scholar at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace where he chairs the Carnegie Economic Strategy Roundtable. He was formerly chief executive of Intellibridge Corporation, managing director of Kissinger Associates and U.S. Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Policy.

Mr. Rothkopf has also taught international affairs and national security studies at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs and Georgetown's School of Foreign Service, has lectured widely, including at many World Affairs Councils, and is the author of more than 150 articles for leading publications worldwide.

Hotel Information

The hotel block at Georgetown University is now full. We have arranged an overflow block at the nearby Savoy Suites Hotel for the nights of April 26, 2013 and April 27, 2013 for $189 per night.

To book, click here or call 202-337-9700 and reference "Academic WorldQuest"

DC Activities


Staying in DC beyond the official competition? Take a look at our list of Suggested Activities.

National Competition Registration Forms are now past due!

Download the below forms and email to To ensure receipt, please send all forms at once.

Team Information Form (one per team)

Release of Liability/ Consent to Recording Form (one per participant, including chaperone)

2012-2013 Categories:

  • US Economic Competitiveness 
  • US Education: Competing Globally
  • US Energy Policy
  • Middle East 
  • Afghanistan/Pakistan
  • China
  • UN Millennium Goals: Environmental Sustainability
  • Geography
  • Current Events
  • Cuban Missile Crisis: 50th Anniversary

Download the 2012-2013 Study Guide

Local Competitions Schedule and Winners

State Dept C2C


National Conference

Speaker Series

Cover to Cover

Know Now


1918 Society

Leadership Missions

Hot Topics

Student/Teacher Education Programs

Academic WorldQuest 2017-2018

Log-in for WACA Leadership and Staff: Access the Discussion Board, Resource Materials, Available Authors, Event Calendar Administration, and post your recommended speakers.

1918 Society Members

Carlson & The Carlson Family Foundation

Carnegie Corporation of New York


The Claremont Group

The Coca-Cola Company

Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) 


Delegation of the European Union to the United States

Eden Hall Foundation


Foreign Policy Association

The Gambrinus Company

Global Ties U.S.

Goldman Sachs


The Holmes Organisation

Johnson + Sterling

Mr. Michael Phillip


Orbital ATK

Rational Middle Energy Series


Rosetta Stone


Sultan Qaboos Cultural Center  

Thomson Reuters

Tomassian, Throckmorton & Inouye LLP

Turkish Cultural Foundation