Redlands, California—Esri joins the US Environmental Protection Agency and the US Geological Survey in congratulating the winners of the Visualize Your Water Quality high school citizen science challenge. In the challenge, students from 13 US states used Esri geographic information system (GIS) software and open water-quality datasets to investigate nutrient pollution in their local watershed—raising awareness for issues affecting areas from the Chesapeake Bay to the Great Lakes region.
Visualize Your Water Quality is part of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy’s Nutrient Sensor Challenge. This effort builds on the Open Water Data Initiative’s mission to make water datasets more accessible for better management of this valuable resource. Students involved in this challenge created story maps using Esri ArcGIS Online.
Here are the winners of this year’s Visualize Your Water Quality challenge
- National Grand Prize—Understanding Eutrophication in the Chesapeake Bay (Washington-Lee High School, Virginia)
- Chesapeake Bay Regional Prize—Nutrient Pollution, the Bay’s Biggest Threat (Poolesville High School, Maryland)
- Great Lakes Regional Prize—Algae Affliction of Lake Erie (Father Gabriel Richard High School, Michigan)
- National Geographic Prize—Eutrophication in the Chesapeake Bay: Fertilizer and Manure (Washington-Lee High School, Virginia)
- Honorable Mention—The Chesapeake Bay: A National Treasure in Trouble (Poolesville High School, Maryland)
- Honorable Mention—The Bonds of Water (Poolesville High School, Maryland)
"The winning story maps show that students weighed carefully various elements in a complex issue and put serious study into making the data intelligible," said Charlie Fitzpatrick, Esri education manager. "This is the power of geographic thinking: thoughtful analyses of data and careful presentations of patterns and relationships in ways that clarify complex situations."
The grand prize winner will be awarded $2,500 and an invitation to attend the Esri Education Conference in San Diego, California, June 25–26, 2016. The schools winning the Chesapeake Bay and Great Lakes Regional prizes will each be awarded $2,500. National Geographic has selected a National Geographic Prize winner, who will receive a copy of the National Geographic Atlas of the World. All six winning visualizations will be published in Esri’s Mapping the Nation book.
Any US K–12 school can receive a no-cost ArcGIS Online school account from Esri to be used in conjunction with President Barack Obama’s ConnectED Initiative.
For more information on Esri’s education program, visit esri.com/education.