Recap of the 2013 Annual SC Envirothon
Shannon Chambers, Hayley Bock and Karl Eastham
Students from across the state prepared for many months for the SC Envirothon competition that was held recently at the Sandhills Research and Education Center near Columbia. Eighteen teams from across the state participated in the 2013 Envirothon with Spartanburg High School Team A taking First Place with the top combined score. Spartanburg A also took home top honors in four of the five topic areas and in the Orals Presentation.
Each student on the First Place team received a $500 college scholarship. Spartanburg Day School Team A won second place and those students received a $250 college scholarship. Third place honors were captured by Dorman High School, with each student receiving a $125 scholarship.
Held outdoors, the Envirothon is a dynamic environmental competition for high school students which cultivates a passion for environmental science and conservation policy by testing in the areas of aquatics, forestry, soils, wildlife, and a current topic that varies from year to year. The 2013 concentration was Sustainable Rangeland Management. The learning objectives for each individual station then become woven together in a team-based oral presentation developed from a fictitious scenario provided. This year, students presented to a panel of experts, hailing from a variety of state and federal agencies, conservation districts, land trusts and county government. The panel was thoroughly impressed with the maturity and depth of knowledge the students exhibited through these presentations.
The SC Envirothon is an affiliate of the North American Envirothon, which includes the United States and several Canadian Provinces. The SC 2014 winning team will represent South Carolina at the North American Envirothon to be held in Athens, Georgia in July of 2014.
The Envirothon has been in South Carolina since 1997, providing over $85,000 is scholarship funds to local high school students. The Envirothon is sponsored by the SC Department of Natural Resources, the SC Conservation Districts Foundation and Association, the Harry Hampton Memorial Wildlife Fund, the Richland Conservation District, the SC Forestry Foundation and the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service. Supporting agencies include the SC Forestry Commission, Central Carolina Technical College, Francis Marion University, Florence County Environmental Discovery Center, Clemson University, and private donors.