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Water Academy

Each year, Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper offers a program (open to the public) that is designed to orient students on ways to better understand their relationship to the waters that surround them. Water Academy also utilizes the combined strength of groups such as the Western New York Land Conservancy and the Buffalo Audubon Society to inform students on the environmental issues and solutions that pertain to the Niagara River watershed.

Water Academy is a college-level course open to the public. In partnership with Erie Community College (ECC) the course explores current, local environmental issues and proactive solutions now being implemented in the Niagara River watershed.

This is a college-level course that features guest lecturers from governmental agencies, community organizations and the private sector, among others. Other partners in Water Academy include Cradle Beach Camp, Earth Spirit Educational Services, Friends of Reinstein Woods, the Nature Sanctuary Society, and People United for Sustainable Housing (PUSH Buffalo).

Class topics may include:

  • Scajaquada Creek Snowshoe Tour
  • Native Perspectives on the Niagara River Watershed
  • Great Lakes Aquatic Invaders
  • Niagara River Important Bird Area
  • Love’s Canal
  • Sewage and You
  • Living Infrastructure for Water Quality: Business and Communities
  • Land Trusts in Conservation Strategy: Saving Unique Places
  • Riparian Buffers in our Watershed
  • Teaching Citizens to Value Headwater Forests
  • Land Trusts in Conservation Strategy: Restoring Habitats
  • Unique Habitats of the Niagara River Watershed

*Please note that this is a draft lineup. Some sessions may change prior to the start of class.

Water Academy 

Dates, times, and locations: Water Academy will take place on Wednesday from 2:30-4:20PM, January 18th to May 10th, 2017. Sessions will be held at the Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper office (721 Main Street, Buffalo, NY 14203), the East Hill Foundation (17 Island Street, North Tonawanda, NY 14120), and various field locations.

College Course Credit: Riverkeeper has partnered with Erie Community College (ECC) to provide this program, so that course credits are available to participating students. ECC course credits are fully transferable to most SUNY schools. The course is listed as PH 122 Sec 02 and PH 123 Sec 02 and to register for course credit, visit www.ecc.edu.

Non-Course Credit: River Academy is also open to the public for non-course credit. Tuition for a full semester is $150.00, and per class tuition is $25.00. There are a limited number of need-based scholarships available. To register for the course, please fill out the Water Academy Registration form. If you would like to apply for a scholarship, please contact Robbyn Drake, at rdrake@bnriverkeeper.org.

Deadlines: Scholarship registration is no longer open. Class registration is open until Friday January 13th.

Questions about the course? Need more information before you register? Please contact Robbyn Drake at rdrake@bnriverkeeper.org or 852-7483 ext 12.

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Written by Buffalo Rising

Buffalo Rising

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  • BlackRockLifer

    This is a great idea, I am often surprised at the lack of understanding of watersheds and how important it is to protect our water resources.
    I have a camp in the southern tier with several natural springs feeding a small stream running through my property. Whenever I take visitors on a tour and especially when children are present I explain how the small stream leads directly to the Gulf of Mexico. I make the case that anything introduced into the small stream will end up in the Atlantic Ocean at some point. Most people get this but few realize that all the roadside drainage ditches also drain into our streams and rivers. These drainage ditches are often full of litter as well as runoff from the road and contribute greatly to polluting our larger streams, rivers and oceans.