Campus Sustainability Spotlight: Arizona WET

Water is one of the most valuable resources across the world, and this is what has inspired the Arizona Project WET in its work.

Arizona Project WET is a unique organization that focuses on water stewardship, hosting educational events and programs to ensure everyone can do their bit for the environment. 

Over the years, WET has grown to become the leading water education program in Arizona, and it is used by students of all grade levels. This organization provides teachers across the state with world-renowned resources and STEM instruction so students can get a real-world experience in responsible water management.

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In this guide, we are going to be sharing the work of the Arizona Project WET and how you can get involved in water conservation

What Does The Arizona Project WET Do?

There are many lessons in sustainability that could be focused on, but water is something that unifies us all. It is especially relevant in Arizona, which is one of the hottest and driest states in the country, which is why the work of Project WET is so important.

Within this organization, there are many platforms and lessons to be shared, including Water Scene Investigations, which inspire students to work with water-efficient technology, and the Aqua STEM Program, which supports teachers in their sustainable lessons in all student grades.

The biggest and most expansive area of work that Project WET partakes in is its contribution to the Arizona Water Festival Program.

This is one of the biggest environmental teaching platforms in the state and is designed to encourage both students and Arizona residents to conserve water sources. It is a series of workshops, educational talks, and programs that can be accessed by anyone in the state who wants to learn more about the environmental impacts of their water usage.

The reach of this program is vast, with over 109,700 students, 4,100 teachers, and 5,500 volunteers participating in the festival since 2000.

2017 marked the year of the largest festival ever as over 1,800 students were reached in one series. This year had 22 festivals overall.

As well as reaching large numbers of people, the Arizona Water Fesitval Program is successful in its education. It was reported by Sara Krznarich, the senior Instructional Specialist, that in the 2016/17 school year, the festival helped students who participated increase their knowledge of watersheds by 31%, groundwater by 21%, the water cycle by 12%, and water conservation efforts by 23%.

How Does The Arizona Water Festival Program Work?

According to Krznarich, the water festivals hosted by Project WET are a collaboration with other organizations, charities, and educational facilities across the state.

With over 45 partners, the water festivals can take place annually and multiple times each year as a way to educate the people of Arizona on their water usage and ways to be more sustainable. Water is one of the most important resources on the planet, and those who reside in Arizona can attest to that.

As it is one of the hottest and driest states, the water usage in Arizona is contributing greatly to wider, global issues, which is why the WET Project resides in this state.

Along with the 45 partners, the Arizona Water Festival Program is supported by school districts across the state. It is with their commitment to the program that festivals can take place throughout the year, and students are encouraged to partake.

The project works with students from all grades to ensure that the next generation is prepared and is destined to be more sustainable. In Arizona, where water shortages are possible in the future, everyone needs to do their bit, and Project WET focuses on school-age children as a way to get the ball rolling.

Many schools have added the Arizona Water Festival Program to their curriculum, making sustainable teachings and the importance of water conservation a regular part of schooling. 

Without this ongoing support and commitment, the Arizona Water Festival Program would be no more, and as this is such a huge part of Project WET, everyone needs to get involved in some way.

Learn More About Arizona WET

Arizona Project WET is a program organized and run by the University of Arizona and is part of the Arizona Cooperative Extension and the Water Resources Water Research Center. 

Both of these programs are part of the University’s College of Agriculture and Life Science, which is why many of the workshops and programs offered by Arizona WET are STEM-approved. 

While the work takes place in Arizona, other projects across the United States do similar work and are connected to these experts in some way. Arizona Project WET is associated with the national Project WET Foundation, which is located in Bozeman, Montana.

The organization offers resources for teachers, as well as workshops and partakes in festivals across the United States. You can see what is taking place in your area by going through Project WET’s website or searching for representatives in your local area.

If you are based in Arizona, you can get involved with water conservation and learn more about the environmental impact of your water usage through their workshops and programs. Schools can rely on their STEm-approved resources and work with the Arizona Water Festival Program through their curriculum.

To keep up to date with everything that Arizona Project WET is doing, check out the website or follow them on social media. 

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