Laval Underground Surveys awarded Fresno State student Teagan Zoldoske the 2012 $1,000 Ben Everson Scholarship on July 24.

Zoldoske, 19, is a sophomore at California State University, Fresno, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering and minors in chemistry and math. She plans to work with contaminated ground water to find ways to make it healthier for drinking as well as useful in agriculture.

“Right now, there is lots of contamination of ground water with nitrates,” Zoldoske says.

“Knowing about the problems that people had made me want to figure out ways to help, since water is our most valuable resource,” she says.

Zoldoske is a biological research aid at the U.S. Department of Agriculture Water Management Research Division. She analyzes elements found in plant soil and the vitamin content of plants and fruits.

Laval Underground Surveys awards the scholarship annually to a student pursuing a college degree in a water-related field. The Ben Everson scholarship has awarded $30,000 to college-bound scholars seeking to make a difference in ground water since the program was established 15 years ago.

The scholarship was created in honor of Ben Everson, a long-time employee who personified the values of hard work, dedication and a belief in the promise of America’s youth. For more details,