Hydrogeologist wins award for school work

Graduate hydrogeologist James Glover has won the CIWEM Young Members Award for his involvement in Mott MacDonald's Water for Schools.

James conceived the Water for Schools initiative to help pass his knowledge on to the next generation. Since 2007, he has introduced real life examples and practical solutions to improve water and environmental awareness in two Cambridgeshire schools.

Working very closely with these schools, he has integrated the concepts of water and environment across the school curriculum so that awareness is engrained from an early age.

The children have constructed rain gauges from soft drinks bottles in CDT, recorded daily rainfall, and then used the measurements in their maths lessons as part of a statistics module.

This gave the children a greater understanding of rainfall, ownership of their education and increased their enthusiasm for otherwise theoretical subjects.

In the long term, this means that they will be able to make better decisions in the future about water conservation and has created more interest in following science-based careers.

The initiative has now run for three years and has been successfully adopted as a permanent feature in the schools’ approach towards integrating water and environmental awareness in education.

James’s initiative has also contributed greatly to an enhanced CSR profile for Mott MacDonald, which in turn has led to new business development opportunities. As a result of its success, Mott MacDonald is considering launching similar initiatives in the Netherlands and in Bangladesh.

Judge Mark Etheridge, from award sponsor Jacobs, said: “Although each of this year’s entrants were of an exceptionally high standard, it was James’s presentation that showed a continued long term commitment to the environment, community and CIWEM.

“James’ personal involvement with this initiative, mostly in his free time, has made a real difference to the education of children in his local community. In fact his sheer enthusiasm and sustained effort left the judging panel a little humbled.”

James, who is currently project managing a £2million project for the Environment Agency on Reservoir Inundation Mapping, said:

“I am absolutely delighted to receive the award and am thrilled that such an initiative is considered to be worthy of recognition by CIWEM. I feel that trying to pass on my knowledge and experience to children in local schools can really make a difference to their outlook on water and environmental issues.

Educating and inspiring the children of today can only help in ensuring that our tomorrow is there for us all to enjoy.”

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