WATERSHED ECOLOGY CENTER
Serving the upstate metropolitan region of South Carolina, the Watershed Ecology Center is encouraging watershed awareness through education and community
outreach. The Center places special emphasis on watershed conservation, water quality, and the study of organisms living in the area encompassed by a watershed.
The Center serves as a repository for regional ecological information, providing education and research assistance to individuals, communities, and governmental
organizations. The Center is also dedicated to providing research opportunities for the faculty and students at the University of South Carolina Upstate.
Watershed Ecology Center - Research
Nerodia (Water Snakes)
Turtles (Duncan Park, Spartanburg)
Upper Broad River
Watershed Ecology Center - Service
Education programs are provided for the Spartanburg Water System, Startex, Jasper, Duncan Water District, Greer Public Works and Spartanburg County.
Watershed Ecology Center - Educational Programs
Under the direction of Dr. Jack Turner, the Watershed Ecology Center began its educational outreach program in 2001, serving students in K-8th grade. Each
year the Center contacts more than 10,000 students in Spartanburg County and offers a variety of water-related, grade-specific programs designed to meet
and correlated to the South Carolina science standards, including:
Hurray for Habitats! (First grade)
This hands-on program uses live animals to introduce students to the concept of habitat and the need to preserve our local aquatic habitats.
Water, Water Everywhere (Second grade)
In this activity from Access Nature, participants raise their awareness about how little water is actually available for human use, discuss how humans use water,
and formulate ideas to conserve water. Two hands-on activities reinforce concepts covered.
Marsh Munchers (Third grade)
This program uses a salt marsh as an example of the interconnectedness of aquatic ecosystems. The program teaches the concepts of food webs, camouflage,
and mimicry through a fun Project Wild Aquatic game involving the entire class.
The Water Cycle - An Incredible Journey (Fourth grade)
Through the use of an engaging game from the Project Wet curriculum, students are challenged to answer questions like “Where will the water you drink today,
be tomorrow?” in their quest to understand the water cycle.
Wise up About Watersheds (Fifth grade)
In this hands-on program, students learn about the watershed we live in and are introduced to the concept of non-point source water pollution. Using “Waste
Not, Want Not” from the Water Sourcebook curriculum and the EnviroScape watershed model, students see how a watershed becomes polluted as each student
is asked to add various pollutants to the models.
Talkin’ Trash (Sixth grade)
Using an EnviroScape landfill model, students get an in-depth look at how a landfill is designed. They learn about what happens to their garbage when it
leaves the curb. They will also be introduced to the innovative process of converting waste to energy used by BMW and Waste Management.
From H to OH! (Seventh and eighth grades)
In this activity from Healthy Water Healthy People, students simulate the creation of acids and bases; manipulate acidic and basic solutions and discuss how acid
rain is formed. Students explore runoff pollution and how pH of water can affect weathering of the Earth’s surface and stream health.
Other educational outreach programs of the Watershed Ecology Center include: Rocks Speak, H2O Below, Macro What? and Green Driver, where high school
students learn about the environmental responsibilities associated with driving a car, with particular emphasis on changing their oil.
USC Upstate Academic Centers 73
2019-2020 USC Upstate Catalog