October 7, 2011
Metropolitan State University of Denver
Metro State receives $1 million gift for urban water education program
Metropolitan State College of Denver has received a $1 million donation from an anonymous local donor to establish the One World, One Water Center for Urban Water Education and Stewardship (OWOW Center).
“In Denver’s urban environment, water stewardship and sustainability are especially important and relevant topics,” says President Stephen Jordan. “Our donor’s generosity is a testament to the College’s ability to address these issues from its unique vantage point as an urban land-grant institution.”
The $1 million donation, the largest private cash donation ever awarded to the College, will seed the five-year pilot project. The College will also contribute funds to lay the foundation for the center’s long-term sustainability.
Set to offer a minor in water studies in fall 2012, the OWOW center will provide an interdisciplinary education program addressing the growing demand for water and the need for greater public education about this vital resource. Students will have the opportunity for internships, service learning and volunteer activities.
In addition to the water studies minor, the center will establish and facilitate co-curricular public education seminars and water stewardship activities on campus and in the community. A high-level community advisory group will work with the center to ensure direct relevance of the program to statewide water needs and interests.
The center will work with leading local and national water organizations to develop the curriculum. Course topics will include hydrology, water law, history, economics, politics, conflict resolution and negotiation.
“When we researched the potential for this program, we found that there wasn’t much being done at the undergraduate level to incorporate a variety of disciplines in water education,” says School of Professional Studies Dean Sandra Haynes. “Through the interdisciplinary model, our graduates have the potential to make lasting impacts on water issues in our communities across the state and in their chosen profession.
“We know the College can effectively fulfill this growing need by facilitating a solution-oriented dialogue that promotes effective use of Colorado’s water resources for both urban and rural communities alike,” she adds.