We have a new Adopt-A-Drain coordinator here at Sweet Water! Ali joined the team in September and will be here through next August. This week, Ali answered some questions about herself and about AmeriCorps.
Where are you from?
I am from Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, which is about 30 miles west of Milwaukee, but for the last four years I was living in Oshkosh, Wisconsin where I earned my B.S. in Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh.
What in particular are you doing at Sweet Water?
After college I decided that I wanted to serve with AmeriCorps for one year because many of my professors and mentors had done the same. Thankfully, I came across the AmeriCorps position at Sweet Water and I was able to land the position! Throughout my service year, I will be focusing on building on our Adopt-A- Storm Drain program. We’re hoping to increase the program’s capacity and to get as many drains adopted as possible!
What exactly is AmeriCorps?
AmeriCorps is a voluntary civil society program that is supported by the federal government, as well as many businesses and corporations. The goal of AmeriCorps is to help communities meet critical needs. In this case, I am serving at Sweet Water to help local communities in their progress toward meeting specific water quality standards.
How did you become interested in Environmental Issues?
I originally went to school hoping to major in Psychology, but after my first semester I decided that I wanted to explore my options before I settled on a major. I enrolled in Environmental Studies 101 as one of my electives, and I quickly grew a passion for our environment. I had never learned about many of the environmental issues we were facing, so it was a completely new territory for me and I was so eager to learn more! I switched my major to Environmental Studies and I couldn't be happier about my decision!
What do you like to do in your free time?
I am a big outdoors person and love camping, hiking, kayaking, and swimming. I love exploring new places and learning about different cultures, which is why I have a huge passion for traveling. I also love to cook, and I love experimenting with new foods and flavors!
What would you like to do when your service year with the AmeriCorps is done?
I am not entirely sure on what I would like to do after this year is over. I know that this year will bring me a lot of new opportunities that I haven’t even thought about yet, so I am just seeing where this next year brings for me before I make any serious decisions. I would love to stay in Milwaukee and work full-time in the environmental field, but I am keeping my options open!