Annual Chicago River
The Student Congress is held annually on a Saturday in February at Curie High School.
Thank you to all for making the 16th annual Chicago River Student Congress, a great success. This was our first year at Curie, and everyone seemed very pleased with the new venue
This year’s Congress highlighted the importance of mproving water quality in the Chicago River watershed. From chemical measures, to the disinfection of the river, to biological factors such as dissolved oxygen and macroinvertebrates, we all have a vested interest in improving water quality. During the Congress, students attended workshops, visited exhibits, and also had the opportunity to fight the super evil team of Dr. Nitrate, the Soil Bandit, the Dirty F. Luent, Commuter Polluter, Z. Mussel, the Dam Engineer. Students joined the Super Water Quality Action Force to help rescue their fellow superheroes who had fallen into the hands of evil!
Alderman Edward Burke, from the 14th Ward, delivered a very moving speech, and Commissioner Patrick Thompson from the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago was also in attendance. Members of Lyrical Revolution recited environmental poetry which stirred and inspired.
Meredith Chowanec, Becky Corrigan, Teresa Andrasz, Liliana Aranda, Ben Johnson, Katie Drommerhausen and Shakura Haqque, science teachers from Lincoln Park High School accepted Friends’ “Educators of the Year” award.
Dr. Michael Bryson, a professor from Roosevelt University, was our keynote speaker. He talked of the river as a source of inspiration for both arts and science. He urged everyone on to greater service to improve the water quality of the Chicago River. He praised the students for the good work that’s been accomplished and charged them with learning from others to continue the fight for improved water quality.
All in attendance were in awe of the closing program when the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, River Trail Nature Center brought out their birds-of-prey, including a screech owl, barred owl, and a red-tailed hawk. The presentation covered their natural history and their importance within the ecosystem.
Photos from the 2013 Student Congress
Thanks again to all who made this wonderful event possible, especially the staff and faculty of Curie High School and the Geographic Society of Chicago.