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Making a Difference in the Community – Denver Metro Regional Science and Engineering Fair

03 Mar 2018 9:40 PM | Natalie Love (Administrator)

As water professionals, our passion for water began somewhere. In our busy careers we may forget that we are all in the water industry for the same reason: our passion for water; and someone, somewhere—whether we remember it or not— instilled in us this passion.


In the K-12 school system, riddled with pressures of standardized tests and now safety concerns, students in the Denver Metro Region get to take a break and just enjoy science for one day. On February 16, 2018, upwards of 280 middle and high school students came together to showcase their science experiments at the annual Denver Metro Regional Science and Engineering Fair. More importantly, over 200 professionals volunteered at the Fair to encourage student’s passion for water. Water professionals served as judges to grant special awards to students ranging from scholarships, cash, and all-expense paid trips to national competitions. 

This year at the Fair, students received over 10 water-related special awards. Top prizes and recognitions were awarded to students with innovative solutions to some of the nation’s toughest water issues. Examples of 2018 water-related award winners listed below demonstrates the complexity of projects showcased at the Fair.


Award Winners:

  • Rocky Mountain Water Environment Association Award: Emma Schmit, 9th Grade, SkyView Academy: The Effects of Magnetism and Algae on Energy Output
  • Rocky Mountain Section of the American Water Works Association Award: Gitanjali Rao, 7th Grade, STEM School Highlands Ranch: Detection of Chemical Contaminants in Water using Carbon Nanotube Sensors
  • Stormwater Permittees for Local Awareness of Stream Health Award: Ester Mohamed, 8th Grade, Crescent View Academy: What do Humans do to Produce Algae?
  • Cherry Creek Basin Water Authority: Shreyas Sriram, 8th Grade, Challenge School: Using Artificial Intelligence And Raspberry Pi To Monitor And Conserve Household Water Usage
  • Stockholm Junior Water Prize Winners:

    --Zach Chapman, 10th Grade, Cherry Creek High School: Cost Effectiveness of Using Sn3O4 as a Water-Splitting Photocatalyst for Solar Energy Collection
    --Gabriel Lorenz, 9th Grade, SkyView Academy: Testing How Mangroves Grown in Sand, Silt, and Pebbles Stop Damage from Hurricane Waves 


The future of water quality is apparent in these young scientists’ projects. It is important to foster young scientists’ passion for water because these students will be solving our upcoming water issues.

To volunteer for upcoming Rocky Mountain Water Environment Association/Rocky Mountain Section of the American Water Works Association outreach and education events or to sponsor an award at the 2019 Denver Metro Regional Science and Engineering Fair contact Jojo La at msjojola@gmail.com.



Jojo La is an environmental engineer in the fields of water resources planning and development, water quality, environmental permitting, regulatory compliance, and public policy issues related to water resources and the management of natural resources. She assists public and private sector clients with Clean Water Act and Safe Drinking Water Act compliance including discharge permits, water quality monitoring, 401 certifications, and Section 404 permits.

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