Water Analysis for Toledo Metroparks Conducted by Lourdes Students

Water Analysis for Toledo Metroparks Conducted by Lourdes Students

Over three occasions in the last week, Lourdes University Department of Biology & Health Sciences students and Assistant Professor Dr. Sandra Beach participated in biological water analysis through the Toledo Metroparks. Students joined Metroparks staff, Dr. Beach and community volunteers to analyze water from the Maumee River at Side Cut, Farnsworth and Providence Metroparks. The project involved measuring the water sample turbidity. Sieve nets were used to collect macroinvertebrate animals from a variety of river habitats.  Animal samples were assessed for quantity and diversity in regards to river health.  These data were reported to Toledo Metroparks.

Biological Water Analysis for Toledo Metroparks by Lourdes Students“This service learning project is one way in which Lourdes biology students actively learn and employ their skills in their community,” says Dr. Beach. Service learning provides students with the opportunity to integrate outreach experiences into academic course content. The end result is that these experiences benefit the broader civic community and enhance student learning.

The Lourdes University Office of Service Learning assists professors with incorporating service into the Lourdes University curriculum in order to enhance student learning and foster within students a spirit of civic engagement and a commitment to the community. Students enrolled in bachelor and associate degree programs are required to complete 20 and 10 hours of service learning respectively. Each year, Lourdes University students complete more than 15,000 community service hours.

During Move In Weekend in August, more than 150 Lourdes freshmen provided community service at 12 social service agencies. They helped clean up six Metroparks, and assisted Seagate Foodbank, Helping Hands of St. Louis, Maumee Valley Habitat For Humanity, Toledo Grows, Sunshine, Inc. of NW Ohio, and Sylvania Franciscan Ministries – all while practicing state and public health guidelines for covid-19.

“This is an amazing way new students are introduced to the Toledo community. It really is a great way to share our gifts and resources with our neighbors in the greater Toledo area,” says Sister Barbara Vano, OSF, Director of Service Learning and Vice President for Mission and Ministry. “As a sponsored ministry of the Sisters of St. Francis, Lourdes University instills in students the importance of community, service to others, and respecting the dignity and worth of each human person and all creation.”

For more information about service learning, contact Sister Barbara Vano at [email protected].