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Water Alliance amplifying MSU expertise and connecting with the community

L to R: Pearson, Latimore, Rose in the MSU Audio Studios
Russ White | MSU Today
L to R: Pearson, Latimore, Rose in the MSU Audio Studios

The MSU Water Alliance brings together experts across the University to push the boundaries of discovery and find solutions to water-related challenges through research, education, and engagement with communities and industries. It’s the Water Alliance for Teaching, Engagement and Research.

Joan Rose is the Homer Nowlin Chair in Water Research at MSU. Jo Latimore is the director of the MSU Extension Center for Lakes and Streams. Amber Pearson is an associate professor in MSU’s Charles Stewart Mott Department of Public Health. The trio discusses the alliance’s vision, mission, and objectives. And they talk about some of the challenges and opportunities ahead for the world’s water.

Conversation Highlights:

(0:44) – Rose describes her research interests of water quality and health. “I found out very quickly that when you’re out in the field collecting water, there are people all around you that care about what you’re doing and finding.”

(1:54) – Latimore describes how the science of swimmer’s itch in Higgins Lake played into her career and interest in water issues. “That connection between the science and being able to work with the public on conservation issues around lakes and streams has really driven my career.”

(3:05) – Pearson describes her two streams of research. One is related to household water insecurity. “Yes, the safety of the water, but also having enough, affordable and reliable water.”

(3:58) – What are some the key issues that make this alliance so important?

(6:16) – What are the vision, mission, and objectives of the alliance? “The alliance is an amplifier and a connector and brings all the MSU expertise in this area together. MSU is uniquely positioned in this area to lead.”

(11:25) – “We have a great opportunity to address this idea of the intersection between water, food, and health.”

(12:45) - The Michigan State University Extension perspective of “advancing outreach with science” and listening to Michiganders to learn of their issues.

(14:03) – In Michigan, we’re well positioned in two important ways.

(14:57) – The panel looks to the future.

(16:18) – How the alliance benefits students.

(16:52) – The community is encouraged to come forward if they need their issues addressed. “Come forward and be part of the alliance. It’s about engagement with the community.”

(17:20) – How can each of us be a better steward of water? “The public doesn’t really know where they get their water from. And they don’t know where the water goes when they flush their toilet.”

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