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Montgomery County Teens Finish Ninth at National Envirothon Competition

Members of the Richard Montgomery High School Envirothon Team (from left to right): Joshua Goozman, Katie Yang, Lynna Deng, Sienna Burns, and Connor Palansky.

ANNAPOLIS, MD – A team of five students from Richard Montgomery High School in Montgomery County placed ninth out of 41 teams at the 2021 National Conservation Foundation (NFC) Envirothon. The event was held virtually on July 25-28, 2021, and hosted by the Nebraska Association of Resources Districts. More than 200 teenagers from 34 states, four Canadian provinces, and three Chinese provinces participated in the event, which is one of the largest high school environmental education competitions in North America.

Throughout the competition, teams were tested on their knowledge of soils and land use, aquatic ecology, forestry, wildlife, and a current environmental issue. This year’s environmental issue was “Water Resources Management: Local Control and Local Solutions.” As part of the testing, teams were required to give an oral presentation on this year’s environmental issue. The Montgomery County team scored high across the board in all categories, missing the top score in forestry by just five points. A copy of the final score sheet can be found at envirothon.org.

“Congratulations to the Richard Montgomery High School team for placing in the top ten at this year’s 2021 National Envirothon competition,” said Maryland Agriculture Secretary Joe Bartenfelder. “I am astounded by the level of scientific knowledge and passion each of these students possess. They have made our state proud. I am thankful for all their efforts over the past year and for representing Maryland so well on a national stage.”

In recent years, Maryland teams have consistently placed in the top 20% at national competitions. Established in 1990, the objectives of the Maryland Envirothon, which sends teams to the national competition, are twofold. One, to test students’ environmental knowledge and understanding of state resource issues, and two, to instill a desire to learn more about the natural world. Winning teams compete at the local, state, and national/international levels. The first Envirothon competition was held in Pennsylvania in 1988. Since then more than 45 states, Canada, China, and Australia have embraced the program and sent teams to the competition.

The Maryland Envirothon is sponsored by the Maryland Association of Soil Conservation Districts and the State Soil Conservation Committee. Contributors and supporters include the: Maryland Department of Agriculture, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Maryland Department of the Environment, University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Maryland Grain Producers Utilization Board, Maryland Agricultural Education Foundation, U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, Garrett College’s Natural Resources and Wildlife Technology Program, Western Maryland Resource Conservation and Development Council, Mid-Atlantic Association of Professional Soil Scientists, Southern Maryland Resource Conservation and Development, Mountain Laurel Garden Club, Mt. Washington Garden Club, Federated Garden Clubs of Maryland, MD-DE Chapter of the Wildlife Society, Extension Advisory Council of Montgomery County, Mid-Atlantic Chapter of International Erosion Control, and Rural Maryland Council.

For more information about the Maryland Envirothon, please contact Maryland Envirothon Committee Chairman Barry Burch at barronb29@aol.com or (240) 215-5004. 

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Contact Information

If you have any questions, need additional information or would like to arrange an interview, please contact:

Jason Schellhardt
Director of Communications
Telephone: 410-841-5888

Megan Guilfoyle
Public Information Officer
Telephone: 410-841-5889

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