Hydrogeology at CSULA
Water resources is one of the critical issues that we as a society will be faced with for years to come. Apart from ensuring sustainable water supplies for a growing population, we are faced with protecting our water resources from contamination (natural and anthropogenic) . Furthermore, climate models predict that certain regions such as, south western United States will likely see a drier climate. All of above will require a workforce that is prepared to address these issues armed with the appropriate skills.
The US Department of Education Funds Expansion of the Hydrogeology Program Through the FIPSE Program (Funds for the Improvement of Post Secondary Education)
FIPSE Project Abstract
The water resources challenges of the United States provide a compelling need to engage underrepresented minority populations in training and education in water resources and National water policy. Identifiable problems include: (1) rapid human population growth is straining water resources of the southwestern United States and US proper, causing land use change and limitations on water availability for human and ecological demands; and (2) minority populations are underrepresented in higher education and key decision-making positions, hindering effective water policy and management for this complex region.
A creative approach is needed to provide education and training that will help implement the changes required to address these challenges. Accordingly, this project will integrate educational reforms at the graduate level in the hydrological sciences at California State University, Los Angeles to enhance student competency in water resources, and to expand the number of students involved in environmental decision making by training them in watershed policy, groundwater hydrology, and water security.
The project will combine new special topics course work, field training activities, and student workshops via restructuring parts of the graduate hydrology curriculum to focus on these contemporary problems. Additionally, we will develop an educational component that includes summer mentoring workshops and student interactions with their communities and with water policy institutions. By uniting our efforts across water resources disciplines pertinent to water sustainability and security, we expect to better understand the problems facing watershed and aquifer systems, improve the preparation of minority students for technical and policy employment, and enhance dissemination of program findings to a broad audience.