Sarah Fisher, NGRREC Director of Environmental Education, demonstrates an activity at the Environmental Education Association of Illinois conference. Photo by Kathy Fournier, NGRREC Environmental Educator.EAST ALTON – The National Great Rivers Research and Education Center (NGRRECsm) is hosting a three-day Freshwater Symposium for Earth Science Educators, July 18-20, 2022.

“A major component of NGRREC’s mission is watershed science and education and we are excited to get back to supporting in-person learning,” Director of Environmental Education Sarah Fisher said. “We have held several virtual trainings, but providing educators with hands-on experiences allows us to dive deeper into the realm of freshwater education.”

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Over the course of three days, the participants will be trained in the following programs:

  • Project Water Education Today (WET): Learn how to use water education activities in your classroom to help students understand global challenges and inspire local solutions. Educators will receive a Project WET teacher certification in both Climate, Water & Resilience and Wonders of Wetlands curricula.
  • Swarovski Waterschool: The Swarovski Waterschool has three core principles that act as the foundation of their program –Access to Clean and Fresh Water; Water Education, and Sanitation; Health and Hygiene. Learn how to incorporate this global education program into your classroom.
  • Critical Interface Network (CINet): Learn about Critical Zone science, an emerging field of research that links earth surface processes with human impacts. In this workshop we will learn how Illinois teachers have been incorporating this cutting-edge research in their classrooms.

“Teachers will gain certifications in internationally recognized water education programs,” Environmental Educator Kathy Fournier said. “Through the CINet program training, teachers will be introduced to cutting-edge science and walk away with classroom resources and lesson plans they will be able to use right away in the fall.”

Lunch is included each day of the symposium and educators can receive 18 hours of professional development credits for an additional $15. There is also a free, optional canoe trip on July 22.

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Registration is first-come, first-served and is limited to 30 educators. Registrants will receive a confirmation email to let them know if they have been selected to participate. A $100 refundable deposit will also be required and returned after full attendance to the symposium.

To register visit

For more information, visit or contact Kathy Fournier at or (618) 468-2854.

National Great Rivers Research and Education Center (NGRREC)

Founded in 2002 as a collaborative partnership between the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Lewis and Clark Community College, NGRREC is dedicated to the study of great river systems and the communities that use them. The center aspires to be a leader in scholarly research, education, and outreach related to the interconnectedness of large rivers, their floodplains, watersheds, and their associated communities. To learn more about NGRREC, visit

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