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EPS Students Participate in Virtual Environmental Day

Elizabeth, N.J., April 30, 2021 – Elizabeth Public Schools students in grades seven through twelve participated in Environmental Day this morning, sponsored by the Elizabeth River / Arthur Kill Watershed Association, in partnership with the City of Elizabeth and Elizabeth Public Schools.

Environmental Day is an opportunity for students to learn about climate change and environmental issues which affect them. Students will gain information that will help them make informed decisions about how they can be part of keeping our environment healthy and viable for the future. The theme for this year’s Environmental Day event is Public Spaces/Public Health.

“Protecting the environment and supporting a healthy ecosystem is imperative and therefore sharing this information with our students whether be in person or during this virtual program is important,” said Mayor J. Christian Bollwage. “We will continue to raise awareness and encourage the preservation and conservation of natural resources through these important events. I would like to thank Future City, Inc and the Elizabeth Board of Education as well as our other partners for making this event possible.”

Virtual activities will encompass the entire school day, consisting of seven workshops and panel discussions which aim to provide students up-to-date information on environmental issues important to the City of Elizabeth, our region, nation, and world. Among the topics are process technology, combined sewer overflow, global warming, climate change and coastal resilience, the New York – New Jersey Harbor Estuary, Elizabeth Waterfront, Newark Bay Complex and Arthur Kill Blueway, fishing, and transforming infrastructure with public art to strengthen communities.

Each student took notes in a provided journal and answered questions at the conclusion of each workshop. Additionally, the presenters held a question and answer session following the panel discussions to provide the students with a voice when it comes to improving public spaces.

“The Environmental Day event gives our students who participate each year the opportunity to make a special connection to the world that surrounds them,” said Elizabeth Public Schools Superintendent Olga Hugelmeyer. “Taking care of the environment is a responsibility we all share and the lessons they receive during this day are so valuable in creating awareness about the importance of preserving and improving our environment for generations to come.”

Event participants included the City of Elizabeth Mayor’s office, Rutgers Geohealth, Elizabeth Board of Education, Waterfront Alliance, local universities, Office of U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, Office of Rep. Albio Sires (NJ-13), Infineum, Phillips 66, and Veolia.

The environmental event took place for the 21st consecutive year thanks to the continued efforts of Michelle Doran-McBean from Future City Inc. and her entire team of dedicated individuals.

Future City Inc., a 501c3 non-profit corporation that was incorporated in the late fall of 1997 for the purpose of providing a facilitating presence in the areas of sustainable environmental and community development. Its mission is to foster sustainable development by educating and assisting emerging racial and ethnic communities in policy formation, which will result in meaningful and measurable participation in environmental and community development.

“I would like to thank from the bottom of my heart the Elizabeth River / Arthur Kill Watershed Association, the City of Elizabeth, Future City Inc. and all other presenters and organizers who helped put together this exceptional event for our students” said Elizabeth Board of Education President Jerry Jacobs. “Despite the challenging times we are in that required the event to be virtual, our students still were able to enjoy an amazing learning experience because of your passion for the environment and unwavering support of our students.”

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