Water Resources Professional Project Reports


Mariana Padilla

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The purpose of this professional project is to examine the history of the Los Padillas Wildlife Sanctuary (LPWS) program in order to formulate recommendations that will assist the school in making it more sustainable while ensuring that it is integrated into its curriculum and educational philosophy in a meaningful way. Despite the value this program brings to the school it has continued to struggle; it lacks necessary funding for staffing and administration and also suffers from low participation and involvement by school staff, students and community. The project approach includes a detailed description of the development of the LPWS based on information gathered through interviews of key individuals involved with the program. This project identifies the factors that lead to the programs success and failures over the last seventeen years. It also examines the Memorial Middle School Agriculture Science Center (MMSASC) an experiential, science-based learning program located in Las Vegas, New Mexico in order to compare strategies and identify a successful program model. Through the analysis of the LPWS program I seek to identify why it has struggled to be successful, as well as discuss the importance of supporting an educational program that facilitates children's contact with nature and place-based education. Based on this analysis, recommendations were established regarding how the school should move forward and ensure that the LPWS program is sustainable and supported. This project is intended to be a resource for the school and community; as it documents their hard work and dedication over many years to gain support from community leaders and ultimately build the LPWS facility. Through telling the story of how the LPWS came to be, it will provide a reminder of the significance this program has for their community and the value it brings to student learning.

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Environmental education--Activity programs--New Mexico., Place-based education--New Mexico.


Professional Project report submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Water Resources, Water Resources Program, University of New Mexico.