Competition was intense at Chenoweth Trails in Darke County on April 26. Over 400 high school students from Southwest Ohio met in the area’s annual Envirothon.
Three teams from Miami Trace competed this year from Fayette County, placing 17th, 20th and 68th out of 95 teams. Students were tested on their environmental knowledge in five areas, including aquatics, current environmental issues (CEI), forestry, soils and wildlife. The CEI this year focuses on invasive species.
“The Fayette County Soil & Water Conservation District is proud of the students who take the time to learn more about natural resources for this competition. It requires a level of dedication because these topics are outside what they learn in school. Placing so high with that many teams is an accomplishment. We also would like to thank Joanna Stitt and Jacqui Montgomery from Miami Trace for advising the students for this competition,” said Brigitte Hisey, Natural Resource Specialist.
The top four teams from the event representing Centerville #1, Russia #1, Centerville #2, and Upper Valley Career Center #1 advance to the Ohio Envirothon, where they will compete with top teams from the other four areas in the state. The winning team from the Ohio Envirothon then advances to the North American Envirothon, which in 2016 will be held in Ontario Canada. Each team consists of five students. An adult advisor must accompany the team, but is not permitted to assist the team during the competition.
Major sponsorship for the Area IV Envirothon comes from Cargill, Inc., Honda of America and the 18 Soil & Water Conservation Districts in Southwest Ohio. The weather was beautiful and the teams enjoyed an educational day while experiencing the outdoors.
In Ohio, the Envirothon is sponsored by the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts and the Ohio Department of Agriculture – Division of Soil & Water Conservation. Professionals from the Division of Wildlife, Division of Forestry, ODNR, USDA, and private industry wrote the Envirothon tests and staffed the various stations.
The Envirothon began in Ohio in 1989, and was modeled on a similar program from Pennsylvania. Students who prepare for and participate in the Envirothon gain a greater awareness of natural resources and environmental issues. They meet a wide range of professionals and are exposed to various points of view on environmental responsibilities while learning about career opportunities.
This article was submitted by the Fayette County Soil & Water Conservation District.