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Posted 5/23/2017

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By Hector Mosley, Public Affairs

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York District, participated in the celebration of Environmental Day 2017 at the Peterstown Community Center in Elizabeth, N.J. The event was hosted by the Elizabeth River /Arthur Kill Watershed Association.  Over 150 local school students attended the event, with this year’s focus on bringing awareness to the community about environmental concerns and solutions in the metropolitan region of New York City.

"Each year, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers looks forward in making Environmental Day a very successful event to demonstrate the importance of preserving our environment by educating our future generation of engineers and scientists," said Col. David Caldwell, commander, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York District. "The Corps' stewardship of the environment is a full time commitment. Our total force demonstrates this everyday through our various programs and projects."

During the event Army Corps, project manager, Lisa Baron held a lecture style classroom sessions with students and discussed the Corps' various environmental missions such as beneficially reusing dredged material from dredging projects, creating marsh lands and oyster reefs to help sustain habitats, and regulating wetlands to preserve natural habitats.

Joseph J. Seebode, deputy district engineer and chief of programs and project management, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York District, made introductory remarks at the opening ceremony on behalf of the participating partners.   

"The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers environmental initiative has helped Environmental Day educate students and the community about the importance of environmental awareness," said Joseph Seebode, deputy district engineer and chief of programs and project management, Army Corps' New York District. "The students were able to learn about the benefits of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) and the many amazing careers associated with them.”

Students from the Elizabeth High School Thomas A. Edison Career and Technical Academy exhibited a distillation unit using Simulation Solutions simulator software to show how local refineries are using the latest technology to reduce harmful emissions.

“This event provided a day to focus our energy, raise awareness and make collective efforts toward protecting the environment,” said Mayor J. Christian Bollwage. “Every single one of us plays a role in conserving natural resources.  All who attended the event left with a much better understanding of how to accomplish this goal. I would like to thank our dedicated partners who organize this event each year.  With your help we are mentoring future science and environmental leaders.”

As the day came to an end students shared their interest in pursuing careers with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and furthering their education in STEM. The celebration of Environmental Day 2017 provided another opportunity for all the partners and volunteers to educate future environmental leaders about practices to preserve their community’s environment, and career paths geared to help make the world a better place to live and work, both technological and environmentally sustainable.