Earlier this year, the team from Lexington took first place at the 36th annual Massachusetts Envirothon, a state-wide competition where high school teams are tested on their knowledge of the environment. After some special studying sessions in the Envirothon focus areas—wildlife, aquatics, soils, and forestry—the Bay State teens traveled to New Brunswick to compete in the international challenge. The five-member team claimed first place out of fifty other groups from across the U.S., Canada, China, and Singapore.
The National Conservation Foundation Envirothon is North America’s leading natural resource education program for high school students, emphasizing hands-on, team-oriented problem solving and community involvement that prepares young people for environmental careers and active citizenship. Here in Massachusetts, students work outside school hours with an adult sponsor to prepare for the annual competition held in the spring. In addition to showing their knowledge in the four focus areas, teams must also give a presentation on a current environmental issue. The winning group moves on to the international competition.
The Lexington High School teens—Jamie Yu, Caroline Ehmann, Jocelyn Chen, Eileen Ho, and Christopher Yoo, supported by coach Steve Wilkins—prepared for the international competition with help from professionals in each of the focus areas. Pam Landry, MassWildlife Education Coordinator and Envirothon Advisory Member, met with the team to provide special training on topics related to wildlife conservation. After their impressive international victory, the Lexington team was honored by Governor Maura Healy at the State House in late August.
“It’s really exciting to work with the next generation of conservationists,” said Landry. “Learning about animals and their habitats can help students gain a deeper understanding of the natural systems that support a healthy environment. The Lexington team worked hard and deserve many congratulations.”
Teams, program organizers, sponsors, and supporting professionals are already preparing for the 2024 Massachusetts Envirothon. The theme for this year’s current issue is “Renewable Energy for a Sustainable Future.” Learn more about Envirothon and find ways you can support the program.