We’re proud to partner with the Santa Rosa Metro Chamber of Commerce on its county-wide Mike Hauser Academy.

The Mike Hauser Academy convenes students, businesses and teachers, empowering our future workforce to become leaders in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. This three-week summer school program provides incoming 9th grade English Language Learner students and students who could benefit from extra math and science support the opportunity to visit STEM related companies where they interact with engineers and professionals to observe demonstrations and participate in hands-on activities to see how classroom lessons apply to STEM occupations and operations.

Russian Riverkeeper hosts students for two days and we teach them some of the field biology and water quality testing practices that we do at our jobs, focusing on having the students use math and science to solve problems together.  We start with looking at the ecology of Foss Creek in downtown Healdsburg, and discuss ways to protect it.  One way to protect our waterways from stormwater pollution is by building a bioswale along drainages into the creek.  We measure a big parking lot that drains into Healdsburg’s Foss Creek during rain events, and calculate the size of bioswale is needed to help treat the stormwater runoff before it pollutes the creek and the Russian RIver.  We measure the flow of Foss Creek, and compare two areas of the creek with very different substrates, a cement-lined channel under North Street and a rocky-bottom section of creek further downstream.  We conduct a macroinvertebrate study of both areas and create valuable data for our bigger study of the Russian River system.  The students really enjoy getting down to the water and investigating the hidden ecosystem in the creek bottom.