Harford Christian School is back on top of the Harford County Envirothon competition, taking first place in this year’s tournament after two consecutive years in second place.
The Dublin-based private school had been a perennial winner in the competition, in which public and private high school students are challenged on their knowledge of natural resources and proposed solutions to environmental issues. Harford Christian took first place in the Harford Envirothon from 2007 until 2017, when it was upset by North Harford High School.
Harford Christian School was defeated again by North Harford in the 2018 competition, but the Eagles returned to the top spot this year during the April 11 Envirothon at the Anita C. Leight Estuary Center in Abingdon.
Harford Christian finished in first place with a combined score of 522, followed by North Harford in second with 493 and Fallston High School in third place with 485 points, according to results provided by Patrick Jones of the Harford Soil Conservation District, the primary sponsor of the Harford Envirothon.
Eleven schools, which sent 96 students, participated, according to Jones.
The local winner will move on to the Maryland Envirothon, scheduled for June 19 and 20 at St. Mary’s College in Southern Maryland, according to the state Envirothon website. The winner of the state competition will head to the North American finals, happening July 28 through Aug. 2 at North Carolina State University in Raleigh.
Glenn Dudderar, chairman of the steering committee for the Harford County Envirothon, has been involved with the competition for many years, first as a member of Michigan’s state committee when he was a faculty member at Michigan State University, and then working with Harford County students for the past 17 years as a member of the local steering committee.
He noted after the competition last week that he has a personal stake in young people gaining knowledge about the environment, as he lives in Perryman along the Bush River and can observe the state of the water and the riverbed and the aquatic vegetation. He also has a stake as a citizen of Harford County, however.
“When I see kids that can speak knowledgeably about the environment and about components of the environment, that gives me hope they’ll have an impact as citizens — and it will be an informed impact,” Dudderar said.