Jersey City Students Connect the Drops:
Clean Cities Make Clean Oceans
Five 6th grade students from Academy I Middle School in Jersey City organized an ambitious campaign, to clean up the ocean. With the cooperation of Daniel Becht, the director of Jersey City’s MUA, and Clean Ocean Action, the small group organized a campaign titled Clean Cities Make Clean Oceans. They developed an activity that begins in the classroom and ends in the street, and is designed to raise awareness about the consequences of littering. In-school lessons will be taught in every Jersey City Public School to highlight the dangers of littering and storm drain pollution. The lesson culminates with classrooms performing storm drain stenciling on the sidewalk above all nearby drains. The goal is to teach students that storm drains lead to our waterways.
On Tuesday, March 18, 2008 the “Cimate Academy” team of Mr. Osenenko’s sixth grade students, David Chen, Tsering Bista, Mathew Aquino, Yoonji Oh and Crystal Jahoor, kicked off the campaign Clean Cities Make Clean Oceans by painting the storm drains near their school with a stencil that stated “Dump No Waste: Drains to Waterways.” The students were supported by Mr. Daniel Becht, Executive Director of the Jersey City Municipal Utilities Authority and Mr. William Golden, Chief of Operations. Packets of paint, brushes, and stencils prepared by the Climate Academy were delivered by The Municipal Utilities Authority so that all the schools could participate in the project. These five students are contestants in the Lexus Environmental Challenge, a nationwide education program and contest about the environment that empowers teens to create a better world. Students entering the contest were required to develop a plan to promote advocacy and put it into action.