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Project Aquascope: Clean Water

Educating and empowering our local youth to combat stormwater pollution.

Project Aquascope

San Diego, California

See Personal Statement
We are dedicated high school students looking to make a difference.
We plan to teach local families more about runoff and pollutants that may affect them. We’re going to create and distribute kits with Foldscopes, pH strips, and empty tubes. With these materials, they will be able to test local water sources and see their quality. Once they’ve had that hands-on experience, we’ll be able to explain how the runoff their homes produce affects the local watershed. After collecting the data they will apply their knowledge in a creative manner and share those art projects through wonderment and other social media outlets. To teach the students about how to conduct these experiments we plan to host in-person and zoom meetings online as well post videos detailing how to move through the process. Find out more about our project at projectaquascope.net!

Collectives this Project is a part of:

Kaley Mafong

What I like:
My passion for science lies in its capacity to propel innovation and discovery. Throughout high school, I have loved sharing this with others around me through STEM education initiatives and curriculum development. In my free time, I promote turtle and tortoise conservation, dance, and do escape rooms with my friends.
What I Do:
I enjoy collaborating with others and working towards a common goal. My involvement in Project Aquascope has taught me to problem-solve and find alternative solutions. I also speak Spanish!
What I Want:
I look forward to using our platform to empower local and international students to adopt sustainable habits that will preserve our watersheds. As youth, we have the responsibility to care for and preserve our world for future generations.

Kaavya Senthil

What I like:
I am passionate about increasing availability of a STEM education, as well as empowering young people with the skills they need to make their visions of positive, sustainable change a reality, regardless of the size of the impact. In my free time, I like to read, draw, and listen to music. I’m also an Avatar enthusiast (not the blue people one)!
What I Do:
Over the past few years, I have been able to teach younger students on topics ranging from parliamentary debate to basic environmental science, which has enabled me to improve my listening and collaboration skills.
What I Want:
I hope that through this project, I will be able to improve on my own collaboration and time management skills. I hope that the students will also be able to make a small difference in their communities. I would also hope that we will eventually be able to bring our stormwater curriculum to a larger audience, and further our impact.

Sarah Datta

What I like:
I’m a senior with a passion for educational outreach and science. Hoping to major in Biology, I’ve spent my high school years exploring science in any way I can: writing for my school science magazine, making curriculum for international schools, tutoring elementary school students in STEM, and much more. In my free time, you can find me playing the piano, reading, or writing.
What I Do:
I’m a great communicator with the ability to take abstract ideas and turn them into actionable items through the written word or presentations. I work well with others, and I can confidently step into leadership roles and propel a team to success.
What I Want:
Through this project, I hope to raise awareness about storm water runoff and our impact on the environment. I’m also excited to meet people as dedicated to sustainability as I am, as well as form connections with local schools and students. In the future, I hope to see this project expand internationally!

Luke Young

What I like:
I’m a junior who loves learning. I love spending hours upon hours reading about new topics and just absorbing the mountains of knowledge out there in the world. I have spent much of my childhood studying various sciences, from learning about meteorology and ecology through science olympiad, to diving deep into chemistry with AP chem. In my free time I love to read various articles and books that peak my interest.
What I Do:
My interest is in helping young kids gain a passion for learning. I’ve practiced collaboration skills by working with various teams on various projects. Whether that be with the speech and debate team on organizing tournaments or working with other tutors to setup a free and accessible tutoring service for little kids.
What I Want:
I wish to be able to educate about the potential harm to runoff. I would love to be able to work with other members of this wonderful community in realizing some of the major harm that our runoff is causing and work to develop solutions. I am also incredibly hopeful that I will be able to meet some truly great people on this wonderful project.

Ariana Lashgari

This team has not posted any supporters yet.
Task
Person
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Order materials

Kaley Mafong

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Outline curriculum

Ariana Lashgari

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Coordinate outreach

Kaavya Senthil

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Oversee budget

Luke Young

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File necessary paperwork and forms

Sarah Datta

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Budget

Expenses

Item
Amount
Foldscope kits with a miniature microscope and small science vial
300
pH strips
45

What’s something we learned by doing this project that other people might not know?

Through doing this project, we found out that our daily impact on our watershed due to stormwater pollution is much larger than we anticipated. While researching to create the slides and worksheets for the students we worked with, we also found out more about the precariousness of water quality in our watershed right now, and how dangerous it can be on all levels, including humans. We strongly believe that there needs to be a higher level of consciousness about stormwater pollution in specific so that people can take action to more effectively address the situation at hand.
We were able to work with an after school program's 5th graders, which was a class of 15 students.

What’s the most important thing that needs to happen next in order to keep this project going?

From this point, we should continue to implement the curriculum to more and more audiences and classes, so that the students may be able to bring home what they have learned and create changes within households. Fostering connections with schools, creating and researching for more curriculum about this topic, and following up with schools that we have already worked with may all be very helpful to further our impact.

If we could expand the reach of this project in some way, what do you think are the best next steps for the next person to take?

The next steps for this project would likely involve the creation of more curriculum, and spreading said curriculum to more schools and students.

These are the Collective leaders and non-profit partners who keep this work going.

Zachary Brown

Our advisor through this process, and helped us in formulating ideas and really being able to bring this project to life.

Chelsea McGimpsey

Land Use and Environmental Planner for the City of San Diego, who guided us about the current state and specifics of the condition of stormwater pollution in San Diego.

Ann Berchtold

Director of Marketing at MIG, guided us through the overall process of working with Project CleanWater, and with tailoring our Wonderment page and maximizing our overall impact.

Brenda Stevens

Water resources scientist at Wood, guided us about specific issues in San Diego today, and specific actions that we can take to combat them.

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