Hood College earns $79,000 USDA grant to sample local watershed

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The funding will support two years of sampling conducted by students to review how conservation practices have impacted water quality.

FREDERICK, Md (WDVM) — Hood College has been awarded a federal grant to monitor water quality in one of Frederick County’s watersheds.

The college’s center for Coastal and Watershed Studies was awarded $79,000 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to sample and assess water within 15 different sites of the Catoctin Creek Watershed.

The funding will support two years of sampling conducted by students to review how conservation practices have impacted water quality.

“[These are] practices that help to control the runoff of nutrients or sediments from agricultural activities. What we always strive to do in any of our courses is have the students have that real-world experiences and it’s project like this that let us do that,” explained director for the Center for Coastal and Watershed Studies, Drew Ferrier.

Ferrier says the monitoring project is expected to begin this summer.

About six students will be involved in the sampling.

Catoctin Creek is a USDA National Water Quality Initiative (NWQI) watershed, and as such has been monitored since 2013 with a focus on conservation investments and cleaner water quality. 

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