The Lackawaxen River Conservancy is pleased to announce that Travis York of Wallenpaupack Area High School has been awarded The Lackawaxen River Conservancy Scholarship for 2018. Travis received his scholarship award of $500 at the Awards Assembly at Wallenpapupack Area High School on Friday, June 15th. Travis plans to attend North Carolina State University in Raleigh, North Carolina. He will major in Wildlife Biology in preparation for a career as a wildlife biologist or a game warden.

Travis is an inquisitive and dedicated student who has excelled in a highly demanding academic program. His increasing awareness of environmental topics led him to compete in the Pike-Wayne Envirothon for three years. He and his team earned first place for Pike Co. as sophomores and juniors, as well as placing second his freshman year. He also did volunteer work for four summers for the National Park Service where he helped with shad counting and the collection of rusty crawfish, an invasive species. He participated in the Enviromental Club for four years in addition to being active in Future Business Leaders of America, serving as a student ambassador, and playing football.

A love of the outdoors has deeply influenced the direction of Travis’s life. His enthusiasm for hiking has led him to explore trails in California, Maine, New York and the Appalachian Trail. He loves to fish and often takes his kayak or canoe to fish on the local waterways.

His passion for the outdoors and the environment has led to a serious concern for Travis. He believes that one of the greatest environmental challenges the nation faces is that of invasive species.

“These non-native species range from plants and fungi to small invertebrates and larger wildlife. They often have few or no natural predators, and thus are extremely dangerous to native populations and ecosystems. Of the almost two thousand endangered species in the United States, roughly half are endangered due to invasive species. The negative effects of invasive species on our environment and our economy are measurably clear. It is crucial for us to control them.”

The Lackawaxen River Conservancy Scholarship is open to graduating seniors who are attending high school in the Lackawaxen Watershed, and who intend to pursue a career in environmental conservation. The eligible high schools are Honesdale High School, Wallenpaupack Area High School, Western Wayne High School and the Canaan Christian Academy.

The Lackawaxen River Conservancy is made up of local residents, past and present, from Pike and Wayne Counties. It is an organization that is dedicated to the protection and preservation of the natural splendor of the Lackawaxen River, its watershed and wildlife.