Serving the Loup Valley for 137 Years

Nebraska Hosting National Conservation Foundation Envirothon


   Ord High School’s Envirothon Team will be representing the State of Nebraska at the National Conservation Foundation (NCF) Envirothon July 25-27, 2021.

   The five-person team of Tye Bruha, Brodie Darnell, Vickie Ference, Alex Flessner and Treaven Scheideler earned first place at the Nebraska State Envirothon on April 28. The Championship merited the Nebraska team hosting honors. The group is coached by Advisors Dave Ference and Johnny Ference. The last time Nebraska hosted the event was in 1996.

   Thirty-five states, four Canadian Provinces and three teams from China are scheduled to compete throughout the virtual event. The top three teams will receive scholarship awards from Smithfield Foods, Inc., as well as prizes from the National Conservation Foundation. First, second and third places will receive $15,000; $10,000; and $5,000 respectively. This year, the Nebraska Association of Resources Districts (NARD) Foundation will award an additional $13,000 for fourth through seventh places – $4,000, $3,500, $3,000 and $2,500 respectively. NARD President, Jim Eschliman states, “Envirothon is a unique competition where students have the opportunity to present real-world solutions to current environmental issues. “We look forward to awarding additional scholarships to some of the best and brightest student conservationists.”

   Each year over 25,000 high school students across the United States, Canada and China embark on a journey to offer solutions to the critical question “How do we balance quality of life and the quality of the environment?” through the NCF-Envirothon.

   On July 25, virtual Opening Ceremonies will be streamed from Inspirmedia in Lincoln. Joel Sartore will be answering student questions live from the virtual event platform. Sartore is a photographer, speaker, author, conservationist, National Geographic fellow and regular contributor to National Geographic magazine. Sartore started the National Geographic Photo Ark more than 15 years ago in his hometown of Lincoln, NE. The National Geographic Photo Ark is a project committed to documenting every species living in the world’s zoos and wildlife sanctuaries.

   Over the course of the event, students will be tested in the areas of Aquatic Ecology, Forestry, Soils and Land Use, Wildlife and Current Environmental Issues.

   Virtual testing day will be July 26. The Ord team will be testing at the UNL East Campus Union (Legacy A).

   Oral Presentations will be given on July 27. Eight rooms of judges will be watching virtual student presentations from around the United States, Canda and China at Innovation Campus. Ord’s team will be giving their presentation from  UNL’s East Campus Union at 10:45 a.m.

   The top three Oral presentations, awards and closing ceremonies will be held July 28 from 1:30-6 p.m.


   The Envirothon is an agriculture, wildlife and science competition for high school students, which is traditionally held outdoors to give students a chance to take their classroom learning and apply it in a natural setting. Five-member teams compete to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding in aquatics, forestry, soils, wildlife and a current environmental issue. The top team from each state, province and nation partner participate in the annual NCF-Envirothon. The goal of the annual competition is help shape our future leaders’ knowledge in natural resources issues.

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