Science teacher appears on Jeopardy


Chase Brown

Holly Cannon receives a cake from Farmer’s Insurance during her watch party in May.


Tennis coach and chemistry teacher Holly Cannon appeared on the popular game show Jeopardy as part of the special Teacher Week in May.

Cannon said she had always wanted to try, so she took an online test to see if she could qualify.

“They do an online test once sometimes twice a year and anybody that wants to take it can, and if you do well they bring you in and have you do a written test and then do your interview and then have you do a mock game,” Cannon said.

When she was invited back to the interview she said she was told many facts.

“While we were there they told us that about 70,000 people take the test, and depending on how you do on that, they invite 3,000 people for a personal interview. I did that about a year and a half ago, and they don’t really tell you at that time how you did and you never know what your score is on the test,” Cannon said.

At the end of the day she was told her waiting time.

“They told us they would keep all of our stuff on file. If you don’t hear from us in 18 months, feel free to start over and take the test again,” Cannon said.

As time passed she said she started to believe she would have to take the first test again.

“After that it was a little over a year, to the point where I was thinking I should take the test again, when they called and said they wanted me to participate in the teacher’s tournament this year,” Cannon said.

She was very excited and was told when she would record.

“I flew out to LA the week after spring break and we taped the whole thing in two days,” Cannon said.

She said she had felt a connection with the show for a long time.

“I have watched Jeopardy since I was a little kid and just always loved it and loved answering the questions when I’m watching at home just to see how much I know,” Cannon said.

She said she had a very unique experience.

“It was awesome. I got to meet Alex Trebek and it was so much more pressure than just sitting at home and I found myself often thinking that I probably knew the answer and not ringing in and getting sad when I knew it and didn’t. I was really nervous, but the great part about it was that since it was the teacher’s tournament, everyone in it was a teacher and so the 16 of us spent the 48 hours together pretty much and I had this whole new group of teacher friends. We have our own Facebook page and everything. That part of it was really awesome to get to meet other teachers and get to hear what other people are doing in other parts of the country,” Cannon said.

The teacher’s tournament special of the program began airing May 8, 2017 but Cannon’s episode  aired May 12. Although she did not get first, she advanced to the semifinals, which aired May 17. She said she was really glad she was able to participate and meet people from all over the country.

“It was a really great and experience and I’m really glad I did it,” Cannon said.