Thursday, November 15, 2012

Life Away From River Stews

Good afternoon all!

This semster I have been co-oping instead of taking classes, so I have unfortunately been away from all of the fun and exhilirating activities of the River Stews all semester. However, although I have not been able to be present at mini-courses, I have still found ways to bring nature and the river into my everyday life.

First of all, this semester marks my second co-op term with Montgomery County Water Services (or Environmental Services, depending on who you talk to). MCWS oversees all of the water, sewer, and storm mains, and also waste collection (the City of Dayton is exempt from this, since they have their own department--in case you were wondering!) Lucky for me, I work in a building that deals with water and the community day-in and day-out, so I'm constantly reminded of how important water is to life and how crucial community involvement and cooperation is. One of the coolest things I've seen all semester was the re-routing of a 30" diameter water main. The construction process wasn't what I found most intriguing - it was the size of the main that I couldn't believe. For those who don't know how water mains work, they are constantly full of flowing water, brought to homes by pressure systems. So when I saw this water main, all I could think about was how much water it could hold and how much water it would be brining to community members. We really don't realize how lucky we are to have clean water readily available at our houses at any given moment, and are quick to look over how much water is flowing underneath us into our community and in our country in general. Working on projects as such really brings the vision and mission of the River Stewards home for me.

Besides working, I have found time to do other River Steward-related activities in my free time. I'm a member of the 2014 cohort, and we have started meeting on Sunday nights to start hashing out our senior project. More details to come on that soon -- all I can say is, our cohort is very dedicated to educating the public, and I really look forward to seeing how our project pans out.

Lastly, I'd like to mention the wonderful day I had last weekend. Saturday was the most beautiful fall day I've seen all semester (and been able to experience since I wasn't at work), so my boyfriend and I decided that we wanted to go hiking at one of the metroparks. Lucky for us, I have a stockpile of every brochure on every metropark in the area (thanks to our visit to the Five Rivers Metroparks' office a couple semesters back), so it was easy to pick out which park we wanted to visit. We ended up going up to Englewood Metropark and hiked all afternoon--it was the best way to spend a Saturday!

I'm really looking forward to being back on campus next semester to enjoy the company of my fellow Stews, develop our senior project, and learn new things at mini-course each Friday!

River Love & Happy Holidays,
Amy Schultz

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