DOWNTOWN — A Santa Monica High School senior is one of 15 players selected to compete in this year’s “Jeopardy!” Teen Tournament, which will be broadcast nationally beginning Feb. 17, 2011, according to representatives with the trivia game show.

Carlee Jensen first found out that she was selected when her family arranged a scavenger hunt with the letters of “Jeopardy!” scattered throughout their apartment.

“Once I spelled out the letters in the right order, I couldn’t believe it. It was months since my audition, and I assumed that I wasn’t picked. I was thrilled,” Jensen said.

If Jensen wins the grand prize, she will receive $75,000. The second place winner receives a minimum of $50,000, and the third place winner receives a minimum of $25,000. Semifinalists receive $10,000, and contestants eliminated in the first round receive $5,000, said Susie Eun, a spokeswoman for “Jeopardy!”

The episodes will be taped on the Sony Pictures Television lot in Culver City, Calif., Dec. 6-7.

Jensen has been a fan of “Jeopardy!” for as long as she can remember.

“I’m really looking forward to every aspect of the game and experiencing the competition,” she said.

Jensen is managing editor her high school newspaper, The Samohi, and was a former intern with the Santa Monica Daily Press. She works part-time as a coffee barista. She is also a member of her high school’s academic decathlon team

“It’s like being in intensive ‘Jeopardy!’ boot camp,” she joked.

Jensen plans to use her earnings towards college and set aside some money to travel with her family. She would like to major in sociology and attend law school.

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