Water Quality Improvement Through Community Campus Partnerships

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Walnut River Water Festival/ Whitewater River watershed water quality testing

William Langley, lead biology instructor, led honors-level students in water monitoring activities within the Whitewater River watershed. The students tested several streams to assess levels of water quality. A report was composed and presented to Sandy Koontz, Butler County NPS Coordinator. Langley's students also plan to present information at area meetings.

In addition to the water monitoring, Langley's students participated at the Walnut River Water Festival held on October 18, 2005 at Butler Community College in El Dorado, Kansas. More than 350 4th and 5th grade students, parents, and teachers from Butler and Cowley counties attended the event. The festival highlighted recycling, household hazardous waste, soil erosion, aquatic life, watershed science, and other water quality issues relevant to the southeastern Kansas counties.

Elementary students were able to discover and explore the exhibit hall with teachers and parents. Examples of activities included a "Become a water tester" booth, and a "Water Cycle Boogie" booth, which allowed students to make water-themed bracelets and learn a fun water song. Water Jeopardy was a big hit with the young students.

While the purpose of the event was to create awareness among the elementary school students, Butler Community College participants also took home valuable knowledge of best management practices to ensure we have clean water for fishing, drinking and swimming.