If you’ve seen a group of young people armed with chemistry kits hanging around local streams and the Flint River you may have wondered what in the world was going on.
Well, here’s the answer.
The young people checking out the water are 6th through 12th graders from Saginaw, Genesee, and Lapeer Counties. They’ve been using the kits to test the water quality in those streams and in the river while participating in the Flint River Watershed Coalition’s Flint River GREEN program.
They’ll come together at Kettering University on Friday, May 18, from 8:00 a.m. – 2 p.m. to present the water quality data they’ve gathered. At the summit, students from across the watershed meet, present their water quality test results to one another, and attend various breakout sessions led by experts from a variety of environmental fields.
Data gathered from this program is reported to professional agencies, which will use the data to determine if or where further testing is needed across the watershed.
“The summit provides students with their first professional conference experience and allows sharing of information from school to school demonstrating how we are all connected,” says Autumn Mitchell, program manager.
Young people in the program spend an average of two weeks inside and outside of the classroom working together with their peers. They learn about water quality, discover their personal connection to the watershed, explore STEM careers, hone their presentation skills, and learn new ways to become environmental stewards, she says.
Results help students identify any water quality issues, prompting them to research potential causes of any problems and providing them with a platform to work from as they explore possible solutions through civic action.
Flint River GREEN is a subset of a larger GREEN network. GREEN = Global Rivers Environmental Education Network. Flint River GREEN is sponsored by many partners including General Motors, Genesee County Community Water Quality Consortium, the City of Flint Water Pollution Control Facilities, Genesee Intermediate School District, Discovering PLACE and Earth Force.
More information about Flint River GREEN can be found by clicking here or by contacting Autumn Mitchell at firstname.lastname@example.org or 810-767-9491. If interested learning more about the Flint River Watershed Coalition and its efforts, please visit the website or contact email@example.com.
Lead Image: The Flint Watershed Coalition photo file