LINCOLN — On July 28, students from Esopus, New York, took the top prize of $15,000 at the 2021 National Conservation Foundation (NCF)-Envirothon, an international environmental and natural resources education competition for high schoolers.
“I’d like to congratulate New York and all of the teams for their hard work and dedication,” said NCF Chair Brent Van Dyke. “Their knowledge about environmental and natural resources issues, as well as their commitment to these areas, have shown me that the future of conservation is in good hands.”
Due to ongoing COVID-19 restrictions and health concerns, the annual NCF-Envirothon competition was held virtually, a first for the Envirothon program, and 41 teams across the U.S., Canada and China participated. The Nebraska Association of Resources Districts (NARD) hosted the competition July 25-28, and students demonstrated their knowledge of soils and land use, aquatic ecology, forestry and wildlife management. The teams also prepared oral presentations on this year’s current issue, “Water Resources Management: Local Control, Local Solutions.”
“We enjoyed showcasing our state’s one-of-kind natural resources management system that relies on locally elected boards making decisions on their unique issues,” said Jim Eschliman, NARD president. “I continue to be impressed with students and their ability to problem-solve some of our biggest environmental challenges.”
The winning NCF-Envirothon teams are awarded scholarships and prizes, with the top three scoring teams receiving $30,000 in scholarships thanks to the support of Smithfield Foods, Inc. The Nebraska Association of Resources Districts Foundation awarded a total of $13,000 for fourth through seventh places and a donation from the Conservation Districts of Iowa provided awards for eighth through tenth place.
The top 10 teams include:
A complete list of awards can be found at www.envirothon.org.
“This year marked the 32nd annual Envirothon competition and was the most innovative to date,” said NCF-Envirothon Program Manager Jennifer Brooks. “The Envirothon program continues to challenge, inspire and empower high school students to pursue environmental, conservation and natural resources-related fields.”
Next year’s NCF-Envirothon will be hosted by the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, July 24-30, 2022. The 2022 current environmental issue will be “Waste to Resources.”
— Nebraska Association of Resources Districts
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