High Schoolers and Undergrads Present Summer Research to Manitowoc Community Members

The Stream Team presented their water quality research to community members.

This article was written by and appeared on the Freshwater Collaborative web site.

The 2023 Lakeshore Water Summit at the UW-Green Bay, Manitowoc Campus provided high school students involved in UW-Green Bay’s Freshwater Scholars Summer Research Program with the opportunity to present the results of their work in water-based projects. They also learned about the results of summer water quality monitoring in streams around the county, which UW-Green Bay undergraduates perform in collaboration with community members and citizen groups in Manitowoc County.

Presenting his findings helped high schooler Codey Lai feel like he was contributing to his community.

The annual event included high school student scholars who completed internships with support from the Freshwater Collaborative of Wisconsin. They presented their work in a poster session and shared their experiences with community members, educators, and water science professionals from the Lakeshore region.

The high school students also learned about one of the opportunities for undergraduate research at UW-Green Bay. The Manitowoc campus “Stream Team,” a group of eight undergraduate students and one high school Freshwater Scholar, presented on their work in the lab of UW-Green Bay professors Becky Abler and Rick Hein to monitor and analyze water quality in four Manitowoc County streams throughout the summer. The summit, hosted in partnership with the Lakeshore Natural Resource Partnership, highlighted this work in a one-hour oral presentation following the poster session.

Two of the Freshwater Scholars featured during the summit were Codey Lai and Gail Wery. Lai, a senior at Two Rivers High School, worked with Hein and Abler on watershed monitoring. Wery, a senior at Green Bay Southwest High School, worked on fisheries research with Titus Seilheimer from Wisconsin Sea Grant.

High schooler Gail Wery will also present her work at the 2024 Watershed Symposium at UW-Green Bay next spring.

“My favorite thing about the research this summer was the opportunity to make connections with my fellow environmental science and biology majors,” Lai says. “Presenting our research to the community was a wonderful experience, as I felt that I was contributing to community change for better environmental practices.”

The Freshwater Scholars program is part of UW-Green Bay’s ongoing work, supported in part by the Freshwater Collaborative, to recruit and train students to become water professionals.

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