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Winter-Spring 2011 Table of Contents

Who Is Erin McLean?

Jeopardy!’s new college champ, that's who

| From Commonwealth | By Rich Barlow

Erin McLean (CAS’13) took home $100,000 as college champ on the long-running game show Jeopardy! Photo courtesy of Jeopardy Productions, Inc.

Erin McLean nosed out competitors from Yale and Southern Adventist to take the College Championship edition of Jeopardy! which was broadcast last November.

McLean wasn’t able to see her victory on TV’s longest-running game show, but she did even better: she was watching the BU men’s hockey Terriers defeat the University of New Hampshire at Agganis Arena when her victory was announced.

“Having 6,000-plus people clap and bow to me was pretty freaking sweet,” says McLean (CAS’13).

The championship game’s final Jeopardy! “question,” posed in answer form, was, “Several species appear in the logo of the U.N.’s International Year of this 12-letter word, vital to the health of life on Earth.”

McLean fumbled that one (the answer-question was “What is biodiversity?”), but still had more money at game’s end than her two opponents.

Taxes will whittle the $100,000 prize money she took home to about $65,000. McLean says she’ll use her winnings to pay off student loans and for “going somewhere sweet for spring break,” with Mexico and London as possibilities. She also plans to get a computer, then save whatever money’s left.

Jeopardy! has aired in its current nighttime iteration since 1984 and has run its special competition for college students since 1989. BU students have competed in three previous competitions, but had never won.

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