Soil Judging club attends Virginia Association Professional Soil Scientists meeting

Several members of the Soil Judging club at Virginia Tech attended the Virginia Association of Professional Soil Scientists fall meeting at Camp Bethel on Oct. 17-18, 2014. Ruth Anderson, graduate student, and John Galbraith, associate professor in crop and soil environmental sciences, guided the group of Emily Salkind, Olivia Simpson, Adam Hurt, Nick Hebel, and Brian Nester.

Ruth Anderson and Brian Nester explain their soil description to professional soil scientists.

Ruth Anderson and Brian Nester explain their soil description to professional soil scientists.

The meeting involved two days of technical talks about wastewater management and concluded with a field day, camping out, and campfire chats. The soil judges described two soil pits where they found problems associated with altering layers of sediment deposits from ancient colluvium flows, and they presented their descriptions to the professionals. The meeting also included a demonstration of how to correctly install a silt fence to prevent sediments from entering a stormwater retention pond, and a demonstration of measuring saturated hydraulic conductivity through a restrictive soil layer. There were six former judges and five current judges in attendance. The soil judges also took part in a texture identification contest, became part of the organization, interacted with the professionals, and made important contacts while learning about soil science professions.

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