Educational and Community Enrichment Opportunities

Things you can do

  1. Take advantage of continuous learning opportunities in Muskegon County, like White Lake Area Community Education.
  2. Check out the events calendar for your local Muskegon District Library.
  3. Explore the class offerings available through Muskegon County’s MSU Extension office. For example, they offer:
    • Interested becoming a Master Gardener? Check out MSU Extension Master Gardener, Rebecca Finneran’s website for resources and upcoming workshops: www.stuckongardening.com
    • See what else going on through MSU Extension Offices on the Statewide Calendar.

Robert B. Annis Water Resources Institute (AWRI) - Education & Outreach

AWRI's education and outreach programs serve a variety of audiences: Educational cruises on the W.G. Jackson and the D.J. Angus vessels have reached over 167,000 people. See our Instructor's Manual for what happens on a cruise.

Programs in AWRI's Annis Educational Foundation classroom can be customized for all ages.

  • Professional development workshops for educators are conducted in a variety of environmental education programs (Project WET, Project Learning Tree, GLOBE, Population Connection).
  • AWRI coordinates Michigan Project WET.
  • Environmental education curriculum development has focused on the Michigan Environmental Education Curriculum Support (MEECS) modules.
  • AWRI's education and outreach team participates in water festivals, community events, and the Making Lake Michigan Great tours.
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Students for Zero Waste Week: March 20 – April 21, 2017

AWRI's education and outreach programs serve a variety of audiences: Educational cruises on the W.G. Jackson and the D.J. Angus vessels have reached over 167,000 people. See our Instructor's Manual for what happens on a cruise.

Programs in AWRI's Annis Educational Foundation classroom can be customized for all ages.

Students are inviting their local communities to "Go Green and Think Blue" by joining them in the annual Students for Zero Waste Week campaign. During this campaign, students focus on reducing land-based waste in order to protect the health of local marine environments. These young leaders are raising awareness of how single-use plastic and other types of litter affect the health of local watersheds, national marine sanctuaries, and the ocean. In addition, some schools are looking at ways to reduce their energy use on campus with hopes of raising awareness of how the burning of fossil fuels also impacts the health of the ocean.

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Teach for our Energy Future

is an emerging program being developed through a partnership between WMEAC, Hope College and the Holland BPW. As a pilot project we are working to establish a high-impact middle school curriculum that connects place-based education, learning by inquiry, and research with Holland’s Community Energy Plan goals for energy usage behavior change in the community. The pilot program hopes to increase awareness and understanding of the impacts of energy use, problems associated with storing and accessing energy, and the advancement of renewable energy forms.

We hope to empowered students to seek solutions to these energy problems by embracing efficient and renewable energy use. We also hope to help foster a deeper relationship between Holland area educators, professionals and community leaders, in order to establish a supportive network of knowledge and resources for students, teachers, and their families.

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Teach for the Watershed

(T4W) is building the Next Generation of Great Lakes Advocates through watershed education! The program is an interactive watershed education program based on Michigan Science Curriculum Standards. T4W provides teachers with watershed educational training and students with tools to help them learn about and take action in protecting West Michigan’s watersheds!

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ZWIL - Zero Waste In Landfill

Zero Waste in Landfill is an ambitious goal, especially with kids who are just learning the difference between trash and recycling. So WMEAC and Spring Lake Public Schools are building a model, student-led zero waste initiative with the potential of scaling zero waste practices district wide and region wide. We know if we can get kids to start reducing landfill waste at a young age those practices will stay with them through adulthood.

This education and engagement strategy aligns with statewide policy work to expand recycling across Michigan.

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Muskegon County Wastewater Management Wildlife Tours

AWRI's education and outreach programs serve a variety of audiences: Educational cruises on the W.G. Jackson and the D.J. Angus vessels have reached over 167,000 people. See our Instructor's Manual for what happens on a cruise.

The variety of habitat at the Wastewater System includes over 1,000 acres of even-aged conifer and dryland white and black oak woodlots; over 5,000 acres of alfalfa, corn, and soybean cropland; 20 miles of drainage ditches, 60 acres of treatment ponds, 11 miles of shoreline around 1,700 acres of storage lagoons; a few hundred acres of natural upland grasslands; and assorted wetland marshes and potholes. Because of this, the 11,000-acre treatment plant is considered one of the best birding sites in Michigan. At least 256 species of birds have been documented at the facility (two-thirds of all species ever recorded in Michigan). Possibly the rarest bird ever documented in the state was seen here in April of 1985, a White Wagtail.

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