Discovery World, Sen. Taylor team up with educators to ‘Build the Water Generation’

Innovative program sponsored by AT&T gives 80 Milwaukee high school students chance to discover power of Great Lakes, career opportunities in freshwater field

State Senator Lena Taylor poses with students from Bradley Tech and Divine Savior Holy Angels high schools who participated in Discovery World’s “Building the Water Generation” program sponsored by AT&T.

Discovery World and State Senator Lena Taylor teamed up with educators today to teach Milwaukee high school students about the challenges facing the Great Lakes and available career opportunities in the freshwater field during an innovative program called “Building the Water Generation.”

This week’s event gave 80 students from Bradley Tech High School and Divine Savior Holy Angels High School the opportunity to participate in a half-day freshwater program at Discovery World.

“We hope this program not only teaches our young people about the fragility and power of the Great Lakes, but also inspires them to become engaged in protecting our freshwater system,” said Joel Brennan, President of Discovery World. “We are excited to once again offer this unique opportunity to high school students to learn about the many benefits of our Great Lakes, the challenges facing them, and the actions they can take to preserve this precious natural resource.”

Students heard from speakers State Senator Lena Taylor, Roz Rouse of Milwaukee Water Works, and Bill Grafton of the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District.

“Our Great Lakes are important to both our way of life and our economic future,” said Sen. Taylor. “That’s why it is so important to not only educate our youth about the threats facing the Great Lakes, but also the actions they can take and the policies needed to preserve this magnificent freshwater resource for future generations.”

Students also engaged in hands-on activities designed to more firmly establish their connection to Lake Michigan and the Great Lakes through biology and water chemistry.

During visits to four different learning stations throughout the museum, students learned about:

  • The career options available in the water field from Captain Tiffany J. Krihwan of the S/V Denis Sullivan in the Digital Theater;
  • The risks invasive species pose to the Great Lakes in the Reiman Aquarium;
  • Water purification solutions to clean textile industry wastewater in developing countries in the MillerCoors THIRST Lab; and
  • What it takes to manufacture tea in Milwaukee and around the world from a Rishi Tea master tea maker in the Pilot House.

The “Building the Water Generation” initiative is made possible by a $20,000 AT&T Wisconsin Innovation & Investment Award.

The AT&T program provides grant funding to organizations and programs that improve the community by: advancing education, enhancing the environment, promoting economic development and new technologies, or delivering other essential community services. This is the sixth grant this year in a new program aimed at supporting local organizations that enhance and give back to their communities.

This week’s event is the first educational program Discovery World is planning for Milwaukee high school students this school year. A second “Building the Water Generation” event is also being planned for February. Discovery World connects innovation, science and technology with exploration and Great Lakes freshwater resources through interactive exhibits and experiential learning programs. Its educational programs seek to motivate and inspire students, help cultivate the “water generation”, and nurture an appreciation for and understanding of the tremendous opportunities within our Great Lakes.

The world’s largest freshwater basin, the Great Lakes provide drinking water for some 30 million Americans and support a multi-billion dollar economy in the Midwest region based on fishing, boating and recreational activities.

The Great Lakes also face significant challenges to their health, including pollution and the threat of harmful species.