UA SRP Trainee Discusses Contamination with Native American High School Students at College and Career Fair

On February 15, 2018, the academically rigorous and bicultural Ha:sañ Preparatory School hosted a College and Career Fair for their high school students. High school freshman, sophomore, junior and senior class students perused tables packed with information and interacted with the representatives before returning to class. This event hosted representatives from many institutions, including but not limited to the UA, Northern Arizona University, Tohono O’odham Community College, and the National Park Service.  The UA SRP was represented by Kimberly Danny, a UA SRP trainee mentored by Community Engagement Core PI Dr. Karletta Chief.

Danny discussed UA SRP’s mission of remediating hazardous waste sites and engaged students from tribes that have been impacted by mining. At the table, Danny demonstrated hands-on activities from the Tribal Mining Modules and Promotor Modules. The hands-on activities included the “The Chemistry of Candy and Rocks”, “Who is exposed?”, and “Is dilution the solution for pollution?”. These activities illustrated how acid mine drainage is created, the different health impacts of arsenic in children versus adults, and the need to test drinking water from private wells for arsenic, respectively.

In addition, Danny highlighted Native American trainees and the many disciplines involved in the UA SRP. Danny shared her academic journey as an indigenous woman with the students.

“The students were highly engaged and asking questions about navigating college and environmental contamination, both of which are important topics for indigenous students and in communities,” Danny said.