A WashU alum who earned his finance degree from Olin in 2004 is competing—along with his wife—in the newest season of “The Amazing Race” for the chance to win $1 million. The season starts tonight, October 14, 2020.
Chee Lee, BS ’04, earned double majors in finance and computer science from Washington University and now works in Texas as senior director for financial planning and analysis at Academy Sports+Outdoors. He and wife, Hung Nguyen, are one among 11 teams who started on season 32 of the hit CBS reality television competition show.
“At first, we hesitated to apply given we had three children,” Lee said in an email to the Olin Blog. “But during one of our newborn’s colicky nighttime rages, we decided it’s never going to be a ‘good’ time to do it. So we just made a video and submitted it.”
The couple applied four times before landing an interview. That was followed by a weeklong audition and a final callback to actually compete on the show in 2018—for the season that starts today.
“The Race was a life-changing experience, and we can’t wait to re-live the moments now that it’s finally airing,” Lee said.
The network says the “teams begin their adventure, which filmed prior to the global outbreak of the coronavirus, at the iconic Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles and travel to their first destination, Trinidad and Tobago,” according to the show’s website.
The competition pits teams in a globe-trotting race through France, Germany, Kazakhstan, Brazil and more. The teams find clues along the way. Those clues lead each team to another destination or to a task they must compete.
In their bios on the show website, Lee, 38, and Nguyen, 39, express a mutual desire for an extraordinary experience by participating in the competition. “I want to laugh a lot with my wife,” Lee says, responding to a question about what he hopes to get out of the experience. Nguyen’s answer: “My husband and I never went on a honeymoon. This is the ultimate honeymoon!”
The competition airs over a number of episodes, but according to media reports, the contestants film the entire season over just 21 days. New episodes air every Wednesday at 8 p.m. St. Louis time, but the show will move to 7 p.m. St. Louis time on October 28.
Lee and Nguyen’s competitors include former NFL players, car salespeople, professional volleyball players and software engineers.
Pictured at top: Chee Lee, BS ’04, who earned a double major in finance from Olin and computer science, and his wife, Hung Hguyen, in a promotional photo for season 32 of “The Amazing Race” (courtesy CBS Television).