Blog Post

Water Quality Monitoring Webinars

CSA will be hosting two webinars this month for the National Water Quality Monitoring Council. It was with great sadness that the Advisory Committee for Water Information (a Federal Advisory Committee Act entity) was moved to administrative inactive status until further notice, which included the National Water Quality Monitoring Council (Council). The Council, which existed for 23 years to help coordinate, communicate, and collaborate around the assessment of our nation’s waters, was home to the national volunteer monitoring work group. The volunteer monitoring work group hosted a webinar series for practitioners and interested folks in aquatic citizen science (webinar archives here). We are pleased to be hosting these webinars to continue the webinar series and support the work of the volunteer monitoring working group as they search for a new home. 

Innovative Stream Monitoring Collaborations

While Trout Unlimited volunteers and chapter have been collecting data for decades, the organization identified citizen science as one of five strategic opportunity areas in their 2015-2020 strategic plan, increasing support of citizen science as a key tool in coldwater conservation. In developing and supporting citizen science initiatives across the country, TU has learned that collaboration and partnerships are essential components of successful projects. In this webinar Jake Lemon, TU Eastern Angler Science Coordinator, will share three case studies highlighting and describing innovative collaboration in citizen science. Case studies will describe how TU is working with volunteers, agencies and other partners to model climate change impacts on coldwater streams, prioritize and evaluate restoration projects and to aid communities in answering ecological questions through collection of continuous real-time data.

Date: January 14, 1pm EST

Presenter: Jake Lemon, Trout Unlimited (TU)

As the Eastern Angler Science Coordinator for TU Jake supports TU chapters, councils, staff and partners to develop citizen science programs that advance our mission to conserve, protect and restore North America’s coldwater fisheries and their watersheds. Jake supports monitoring efforts that help prioritize our restoration work, monitor effectiveness of our projects, protect streams from development and enhance our ability to track emerging water quality threats.

Moderator: Julie Vastine, Alliance for Aquatic Resource Monitoring (ALLARM)

Engaging volunteers for long-term monitoring program success

Date: January 30, 2pm EST 

Effective volunteer engagement is a critical component of every successful volunteer monitoring program. When done well, volunteers feel fulfilled and programs are able to function efficiently. The key for program leaders and staff is to understand that volunteer engagement is a two way street; rather than “using” volunteers to meet programmatic goals, programs that identify both rights and responsibilities for their volunteers, and work diligently to ensure those are carried out, can attract and keep and the best volunteers for the jobs that need to be done. In this webinar, we will share best practices for volunteer recruitment, retention and engagement over time, referencing techniques used by a variety of volunteer monitoring and volunteer-driven organizations with decades of experience, and citing examples from our own experiences.

Presenters: Elizabeth Herron, University of Rhode Island, and Kris Stepenuck, University of Vermont

Moderator: Julie Vastine, Alliance for Aquatic Resource Monitoring (ALLARM)

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