Friday, November 20, 2009

Duke University's Smart Home Project

Check out this exciting, interdisciplinary, student-driven project the Engineering students at Duke University initiated.....

This would be a great riverfront dorm :)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Monday, November 16, 2009

It's All Natural...Wastewater treatment in Georgia

Some of you may already know about the concept of natural water treatment, but I heard about this at a conference a couple weeks ago and would love to hear others' thoughts on this - whether you think it would work in a city like Dayton, benefits/costs, etc. Check it out and let me know what you think!

Just Another Day in Curriculum Development!

The development of the River Leadership Curriculum has been progressing each week with the help of everyone involved, including the Stewards! This past Friday we tested our second module during the mini - course (see post below!)

The Wednesday before, the core planning group for the McGregor grant met at their weekly meeting to discuss further plans. The group discussed Student Learning Outcomes as well as a potential timeline for the development as the semester wraps up. The group decided that having 3-4 SLOs that are integrative and synthetic, to serve the interdisciplinary purpose of the curriculum, would be a good goal to work towards. The group plans on enlisting the help of approximately six Stewards to work down the long list of SLOs, making sure they are all represented in the 3-4 being developed. Working in a small group will make it easier to go through the 126 SLO's and to think about the exact wording of the 3-4 needed.

The Friday before this meeting, the Stewards were a big help with the curriculum development! We brought the large post-its from the SLO brainstorming seminar to the mini-course. The Stewards broke up into small groups, each with a number of post-its, and working together they put each SLO into one large excel file. Each SLO was tagged with how many checks it received, as well as two different grouping categories. This allows us to have all of the SLOs in one place and it allows us to work with the SLOs in different ways.

Thanks to the Stews for their hard work!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

River Science & River Leadership

The River Stewards discussed River Science, during the mini-course on Friday October 13th, and how it relates to the River Leadership Curriculum being developed by the Rivers Institute. Joined by a "teaching team", including Jeff Kavanaugh (Biology faculty), Mike Eckberg (Community Partner - MCD), and Liz Whalen (Biology student), the students evaluated the importance of understanding the science of rivers despite your academic major.

Below are a couple of the Student Learning Outcomes (SLO) that were brought up at our Saturday brainstorm session a couple weeks ago. We thought about these (and others) as we listened to the "teaching team" talk about River Science.

1. means to evaluate and participate in scientific conversations within the community (learn the Language)

2. demonstrate knowledge of ecology of river systems (surface and ground)

3. articulate the importance of water as a sustainable resource, water as a system, how to use water, implications of water use

4. demonstrate basic understanding of ecological principles as they relate to river systems

5. Understanding connections between community health and rivers (water quality and availabilty)

These are only a few examples. The entire list is on the website at:

Friday, November 13, 2009

Low Dam Removal

To follow up on Wednesday's conversation concerning low dam removal in the area... the following are two sets of pictures from Greg Brumtit with Five Rivers MetroParks.

These two shots (above) are on Clear Creek in Golden, CO…this stream is very similar (a bit smaller than the Mad) in flow and structure as the Mad River. Golden estimated several years ago a $2-2.5 million annual economic impact from this park.

These two are taken at the Salida, Co park on the Arkansas river…flow when these were taken was 3000 CFS…peak snowmelt flow….665 is a really good example of a classic “U” grade control. The Salida project was riverfront restoration and recreation project…

NY Times article: Removing a Barrier

Removing a Barrier By ELIZABETH ABBOTT
PROVIDENCE, R.I. — This city, which once moved rivers to create a new urban design, is now moving a major highway away from its downtown and opening up approximately 20 acres for development. This newly accessible area is within walking distance of Providence’s historic waterfront and commercial downtown.......

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Help Conserve America's Watersheds for Future Generations

Nearly half of our population does not know what a watershed is; let alone which one they live in. This means there's also a good chance that many are unaware of how their actions contribute to water pollution and habitat destruction.

Right now, your U.S. representative has the opportunity to support a bill that will increase funding for environmental education programs to educate America's youth about their local watershed and provide opportunities for them to experience their watershed firsthand.

Click here to support the effort!