Alma College Awarded $48,000 3M Vision Grant
The 3M Foundation has funded a joint Pine River monitoring project
between Alma College and the Alma and St. Louis public schools with a
$48,000 grant. Alma College is one of four colleges in the country to
be awarded a 3M Vision Grant for 2006.
3M officials presented a check for $24,000, the first of three installments, to the Alma College Environmental Studies Program at the 3M Scientific Anglers facility in Midland on Aug. 31.
View a video of the presentation.
The river-monitoring project will allow Alma College science, policy
and science education students to work with local high school teachers
and students to conduct an ongoing assessment of the Pine River. The
Pine River has been the site of a U.S. EPA Superfund cleanup and
dredging project by Valero Energy Corporation and is the only navigable
waterway in Gratiot County. The monies will pay for teacher training
and equipment to establish a monitoring program that will continue in
perpetuity beyond the life of the grant.
"This is a critical time for us to establish the baseline health of the Pine River," said Murray Borrello, coordinator of the Environmental Studies Program at Alma College. "It's all part of the College, the high schools, teachers, professors, students and the community all working together."
"We are excited about collaborating with Alma College," said Don Pavlik, Alma Public Schools superintendent. "The Borrellos (Murray and his wife, Dianne) have led the charge, and we are the lucky recipients. We're excited about getting students involved in the direct application of some of their studies and working with the College far more directly."
Yearly updates of the Pine River’s health will be presented to the broader community through pamphlets and community education programs and presentations. The education made possible by the grant allows students to understand the relationship between science and public policy as recommendations are made concerning improving the health of the river based on data collected by the students.
The 3M Foundation Vision Grant fosters the development of innovative, academically based programs that connect colleges and communities and transform the basis of learning. In the 19 years of the Vision Grant program, 90 grants totaling almost $4 million have been awarded to private colleges located in 3M communities across the country.
Posted: Tue, September 5th, 2006 at 1:23PM