Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2011RI99B

Drinking Water Outreach in Rhode Island

Institute: Rhode Island
Year Established: 2011 Start Date: 2011-03-01 End Date: 2012-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $15,480 Total Non-Federal Funds: $26,096

Principal Investigators: Harold Knickle, Geoffrey Bothun

Abstract: This project will utilize two methods of knowledge dissemination about the realities of Rhode Islands drinking water concerns. Water resource professionals and non-professionals will be targeted equally through the combination of an established conference for industry professionals and a flourishing summer camp for high school students. The first outreach approach is the continuation of an annual conference to provide background and knowledge for working professionals in the clean water field and an extension of undergraduate and graduate student education in this area. This will be the fifth year that the Clean Water Conference has been promoted on the University of Rhode Islands campus and held in Cherry Auditorium. Attendance has increased as the conference has established itself within the water resources field, and participation reached 70 spectators last year. Conference topics will focus on both water resources policy and the technical aspects associated with providing clean water to the residents of Rhode Island. It is believed that this conference will promote student interest in water resource related profession as well as meet the needs of water professionals in the state who wish to further their education. The second major activity of this project is the hosting of a summer workshop at the University of Rhode Island for middle and high school students. The experiences gained at the Clean Water Science Academy will serve as an introduction to clean water concepts through the implementation of lectures, the utilization of laboratories and the opportunity to participate in field trips. Students will be recruited from multiple schools, coming together during this week long laboratory oriented engineering and science camp. Interest has grown from year to year, and last years students numbered over 30. The primary objectives of the conference and the camp are the same; to advance awareness and knowledge of the importance of clean water in Rhode Island and to discuss and provide insight into the various factors affecting the States ability to obtain clean water for multiple uses.