ThinkWater recently announced the selection of 10 leaders in water education, outreach, and extension to be ThinkWater Fellows for 2017-18. Dr. Grant Weinkam, Research Analyst, University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center, was among the list of new fellows selected from the many outstanding applications from candidates across the country. As a member of the new ThinkWater fellowship Weinkam will interact with others engaged with water-related issues and learn a proven method for teaching the universal rules underlying systems thinking suitable for all ages and populations. Drs.
Arizona Project WET Hosts Flagstaff Water Festival
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – More than 660 fourth graders gathered with their teachers and parents at Foxglenn Park on Sept. 26 to learn about water on the earth system with the help of 37 volunteers from the City of Flagstaff, Northern Arizona University and Coconino County Public Health District.
Held during the school day, the interactive and festive event was organized by Arizona Project WET (APW) in collaboration with the City of Flagstaff Water Conservation Department. The mission was to help students and their teachers gain a deeper understanding of how water works and where Flagstaff’s water comes from.
Last year the Flagstaff Water Festival program was revitalized thanks to the financial support of SCA, a global hygiene and forest products manufacturer based in Flagstaff, working in conjunction with the City of Flagstaff Water Conservation Department who also provided funding, staff time in local coordination, and equipment.
SCA and the City of Flagstaff continued their key support of the program this year, enabling APW to support 15 new teachers with the Water Festival professional development workshop and to expand the festival to include charter and private schools, such as the Montessori Charter School of Flagstaff and Mountain School. At the professional development workshop, teachers practiced using the inquiry process and science note-booking in order to increase their students’ 21st century skills.
“I had a great time. It is an amazing curriculum and I can see the immediate learning the students were having,” wrote City Manger Kevin Burke, “Thanks for bringing it to Flagstaff.”
The Water Festival event is also supported by an expanded curriculum that includes pre- and post-festival lessons to prepare for and extend student learning. At the event, students engaged with interactive models to perform science investigations of watersheds, the water cycle, groundwater flow, and water conservation. NAU volunteers were trained in class, while community volunteers attended a separate two-hour training.
The growth in teacher and student participation is in no small part a reflection of the Flagstaff Unified School District’s active support. FUSD provided teachers with reimbursement for their time at the workshop, as well transported FUSD classes for free to the Water Festival event.
Staff from the Willow Bend Environmental Center as well as the City of Flagstaff’s STEM City Connections Coordinator Mindy Bell helped recruit volunteers, many of whom were no doubt inspired to attend when City Manager Kevin Burke stepped up as the first City employee to sign up to volunteer.
From City Manager Kevin Burke and SCA engineer Annikki Chamberlain’s enthusiastic support as Area Coordinators to the NAU students missing class to gain field experience, everyone in the community pitched in – braving the windy weather – and made the Water Festival program a huge success. In addition to the sight of 4th graders smiling ear-to-ear after the festival, volunteers and staff were rewarded with delicious food donated by Fratelli Pizza and Oregano’s Pizza.
For more information about the Arizona Water Festival program, please contact Tina Sleeper at email@example.com.
The deadline is approaching to apply for the WRRC summer internship—an internship designed for students interested in gaining experience writing about environmental and water issues. The selected intern will contribute to research and writing for an issue of Arroyo, the annual WRRC publication that focuses on a critical Arizona water issue. This year's topic is Arizona’s irrigated agriculture. It will look at the many issues of associate with agricultural water use, water rights, efficiency and conservation, and participation in solving water supply challenges.
ANNOUNCEMENT: TRAVEL SUPPORT OPPORTUNITY for UA FACULTY (provided by the International Arid Lands Consortium)
The March 28th Water Resources Research Center Annual Conference poster session provided a unique opportunity for UA students to showcase their research and interact with the diverse mix of conference participants. Among the posters presenters were two WRRC student research assistants, Erin Gray and Bailey Kennett. Although their research areas related to water are quite different, both found the opportunity a rewarding platform to engage with water sector professionals.
On March 28, 2017, approximately 325 people traveled to the University of Arizona Student Union for the WRRC Annual Conference, Irrigated Agriculture in Arizona: A Fresh Perspective.
A new web map that illustrates the University of Arizona’s commitment to sustainability is now available thanks to a partnership among the UA Office of Sustainability; Planning, Design and Construction; and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences' Communications and Cyber Technologies division. The map pinpoints sites, such as rainwater harvesting installations, solar panels, and recycling opportunities, as well as projects and programs that promote sustainability on campus.