Protecting our water and our future

May 16, 2011

UM-Dearborn hosted the 14th annual 2011 Rouge River Water Festival on May 5, which brought more than 1,500 participants to campus, including Matt Noble-Richardson from Wayne County Parks (pictured at left in the above photo) who gave a presentation about reptiles and amphibians for students.

The theme of this year's Rouge River Water Festival was "Protecting Our Water and Our Future." The goal of the event is to give 5th grade students from elementary schools located throughout the 48 communities in the Rouge River Watershed the opportunity to learn about water as a precious natural resource.

"Through more than 40 water-themed presentations led by volunteers from government, industry, academic institutions, and NGOs, we want these students to understand some of the amazing properties of water, its uses in industry and in our homes, and its role in biogeochemical cycles," said David Susko, director of UM-Dearborn's Environmental Interpretive Center. "Hopefully, these students walk away from this event knowing that they have a responsibility to protect and preserve water for all of society."

Nearly 1400 students took turns eating lunch in the AB courtyard on campus between presentations, as shown in the upper photo below. In the bottom photo, John Nevin and Megan Herod from the International Joint Commission give a presentation in the EIC Rain Garden on "Taking Charge of Your Watershed."

More than 100 volunteers and 85 presenters donated their time to participate in the festival, which is offered free to schools thanks to the event's Blue Heron sponsors: Ford Motor Company, DTE Energy Foundation and Waste Management.

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