Service Stories Archive: Water Ecology Center reaching local schools and monitoring local streams

Because of the upcoming introduction of a new University website design, existing Service Stories on the site are being migrated to our Service Learning Blog so that they will remain in our archive.

This article was originally published in 2019.


USC Upstate’s Watershed Ecology Center, led by Dr. Jack Turner, seeks to promote scientific research on the watershed ecology of the region, community outreach, and educational programming for local schools. The Center reaches children in grades K-8 with hands-on standard based science education at no cost to the schools thanks to the generosity of donations from community organizations. With 3,800 children in 2001, its opening year, the Center now reaches over 25,000 each year for a current life-time contact total of over 250,000 children and their outreach continues to grow. Additionally, the Center reaches out adults. The Adopt-a-Steam (AAS) program trains and equips adults to monitor the water quality in a local stream. They also sponsor Rain-Barrel-Give-Away events to promote water conservation. The Center’s goal in all its activities is to promote water conservation and to increase awareness of the importance of water and water quality.

A group of students in the WEC classroom