One student’s call to conserve makes her a #WaterLess Hero
Madison Aprandini of Brevard County used visual aids from the district and invited guest speakers to help provide a water conservation educational event in February 2020 at the Cocoa Library.
If the rest of the high school graduating class of 2020 is anything like Madison Aprandini of Brevard County, Florida’s water resources have a bright future.
Madison, a senior at Edgewood Junior/Senior High School in Merritt Island, is concerned about the Sunshine State’s streams, rivers, lakes and underground aquifers, so she focused her senior project on water conservation and what we can all do to preserve our precious water resources.
“My project could have been about any topic,” she says. “I chose to arm people with knowledge about where our water comes from and why we should conserve it.”
Madison singlehandedly organized and promoted an informational water conservation event at the Cocoa Library recently, inviting guest speakers Donald Downs, the Cocoa Utilities Water Conservation Administrator, and Dr. Jennifer Mitchell, Communications Coordinator with the St. Johns River Water Management District.
In addition to recruiting attendees from her neighborhood and school, Madison wrote a research paper that provided the background for her opening comments. Knowing that half of all water used by the average household is used outdoors, Madison looked to Dr. Mitchell to provide easy ideas for cutting back on landscape watering and adhering to the district’s year-round water restrictions.
My project could have been about any topic. I chose to arm people with knowledge about where our water comes from and why we should conserve it.
Madison traces her passion for water resource protection to two classes she attended at her high school: Environmental Biology and Advanced Placement Environmental Science. She learned about Florida’s aquifers, the potential threat of a freshwater shortage and the need for water conservation, both indoors and outdoors.
“This is the first time I have been contacted by a high school student to participate in project of this magnitude,” Mitchell says. “Even at this young age, Madison’s enthusiasm for providing useful information on responsible water use is apparent. It’s exciting to see her serve as a role model for the next generation of water conservation-minded citizens.” In fact, Madison is also involved in teaching elementary-age children about water conservation, passing her passion for the subject on to even younger students.
As attendees left the recent educational event, they discussed how little they knew about how much water they are consuming in their homes and yards and appeared motivated by Madison’s efforts to make changes, Mitchell notes.
“Community programs like this that shed light on the need to conserve water in our landscaping practices are sure to magnify the impact of dedicated individuals such as Madison,” says Mitchell.
With graduation on the horizon, Madison is setting her sights on the University of Central Florida, but she hasn’t yet officially chosen a major.
“My senior project fueled my love of environmental issues,” Madison says. “It would be really good to focus in that area. Our water is so vital and I’d really like to make a difference.”
Honestly, Madison, we think you already have.
For ideas on conserving water visit WaterLessFlorida.com.