Southmoreland High School students recently attended the Envirothon competition at Twin Lakes. The students answered questions about different categories related to science and nature.
“Each team goes through five separate stations,” said Joselyn Busato, sophomore. “Someone provided a test packet for the team to answer about that specific subject. There is also some sort of real-life identification in each section.”
The students were required to study on their own. They each had to study a specific category to benefit their team.
“To prepare, participants could study off of information and articles given on the Envirothon website,” said Maria Catalina, sophomore. “We had to study areas of aquatics, forestry, soils, wildlife, and the current issue for the year. We had to learn everything from animal tracks to identifying trees to bird calls.”
“It is one of those events that you need previous knowledge for, or you need to consult outside sources for,” said junior Raine Lookabill. “I hunt, so I know about wildlife. Last year we met with a few specialists in some of the fields and learned from them.”
Even though the event is a “test,” the students loved getting to spend the day outdoors instead of in a classroom.
“My favorite part was being outside,” Catalina said. “It was such a beautiful day, and we were able to test by the lake and in the woods.”
“I loved getting to spend the day outside with my friends,” Busato said.
The competition was enjoyable, according to the students, and they want to participate in the event next year, too.
“It was a one of a kind experience to learn and interact with the environment,” said freshman Michael Klatt. “Yes, I would like to do it again.”
“I will definitely be competing next year because it’s my senior year, and I would like to win again like last year,” Lookabill said. “We are going to put in a lot more effort and meet with a few specialists again. Our team decided to pretty much remain the same, as of now, so we all know what we need to do to be prepared for next year.”
Southmoreland have won the Envirothon competition the past two years and went to states a year ago. However, the students were not able to come home with a win this year.
“Envirothon is a great experience,” said Elle Kenney, a sophomore. “I was upset that Southmoreland wasn’t able to win or go to states for the third year in a row. But that only encourages and motivates me to be better and win next year.”