Ontario School Top Canadian Team at North American Environmental Competition in Missouri

Students showcase their environmental knowledge at the 2015 North American Envirothon 

SPRINGFIELD, MO, Aug. 10, 2015 /CNW/ - The Ontario Envirothon team from University of Toronto Schools in downtown Toronto finished in 15th place, and were the top-placing Canadian team, at the North American Envirothon (NAE) held July 27- August 2, 2015 in Springfield, Missouri! The team was the top placing Ontario school, outcompeting 19 other teams from across the province for the title of Ontario Envirothon Champions, and winning the chance to advance to the NAE. The excitement of the Envirothon competition was captured by Forests Ontario; for a sneak peek, check out the video on Forests Ontario's YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/ontforest.

From July 27th to August 2nd, high school students from more than 50 states, provinces and territories gathered at Missouri State University in Springfield to compete in the North American Envirothon. Students engaged in hands-on learning from experienced professionals in four key subject areas— Forests, Soils, Wildlife, and Aquatic Ecosystems. The 2015 current issue, Urban and Community Forestry, rounded out this year's subject areas. Students tested their knowledge through an elite competition, challenging them in areas including soil and water sampling, tree marking, analyzing wildlife habitat and developing innovative solutions for ensuring healthy forests in our urban landscapes.

In 2016, the North American Envirothon will head to Ontario for the first time in its history. Forests Ontario has been awarded the hosting rights for the prestigious 2016 NAE, which will be hosted at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario. The NAE engages more than 500,000 students, families and educators from over 50 state, provincial and territorial programs in environmental skill development and competition. It will provide Forests Ontario the perfect opportunity to showcase what Ontario has to offer and to engage students and schools across Canada in environmental education.

"The North American Envirothon is a great opportunity for youth to connect with nature and hone their skills in environmental sciences," said Rob Keen, CEO of Forests Ontario. "Forests Ontario is thrilled to host the 2016 North American Envirothon in Peterborough; it's a phenomenal opportunity to showcase what Ontario has to offer, from amazing tourism to world-class environmental education opportunities."

Envirothon also prepares students for green careers by giving them skills and confidence in fields including environmental sciences and natural resources, as well as building critical thinking and collaboration. As one of Forests Ontario's premiere education programs, Ontario Envirothon encourages students to venture outdoors and learn about environmental management in a fun and informative setting that inspires a passion for nature. It's for this reason that Ontario Envirothon helps to shape the green leaders of tomorrow.

"Ontario was well-represented at the NAE through our Ontario Envirothon champions, University of Toronto Schools, and I commend them for their hard work, enthusiasm, knowledge and good sportsmanship," said Jessica Kaknevicius, Education Programs Manager at Forests Ontario. "When we offer youth the opportunity to connect with nature and develop their skills, it is truly amazing to see how students develop a deep love for nature; it's no wonder so many of these kids go on to pursue green careers."

About Forests Ontario
Forests Ontario is the voice for our forests. Working to promote a future of healthy forests sustaining healthy people, Forests Ontario is committed to the re-greening of Ontario through tree planting efforts on rural lands and in urban areas, as well as the renewal and stewardship of Ontario's forests through restoration, education and awareness. Visit www.forestsontario.ca or follow us @Forests_Ontario.

SOURCE Forests Ontario

Video with caption: "Video: Envirothon is growing tomorrow's Green Leaders. Envirothon prepares students for green careers by giving them skills and confidence in fields including environmental sciences and natural resources, as well as building critical thinking and collaboration.". Video available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/cgi-bin/playback.cgi?file=20150810_C1978_VIDEO_EN_475127.mp4&posterurl=http%3a%2f%2fphotos.newswire.ca%2fimages%2f20150810_C1978_PHOTO_EN_475127.jpg&order=1&jdd=20150810&cnum=C1978

For further information: For more information, photos or to arrange an interview please contact: Shelley McKay, Director of Communications & Development, Forests Ontario, 416.646.1193 x. 232, smckay@forestsontario.ca; Alison Rutka, Communications Manager, Forests Ontario, 416.646.1193 x. 257, arutka@forestsontario.ca


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