The Water Environment Federation (WEF) is excited to introduce WEF InFLOW (INtroducing Future Leaders to Opportunities in Water), an initiative that strives to identify promising students from underrepresented minority groups who are interested in professional careers in the water industry.
WEF InFLOW is a scholarship program, which invites students to attend WEFTEC to:
- solidify their interest in working in the water sector;
- help foster a network within WEF and water to increase probabilities for employment and for long term success.
The program will kick-off at WEFTEC 2018 (https://www.weftec.org/), and provided travel assistance, hotel accommodations, registration, and additional networking opportunities to 16 students from Howard University (Washington, D.C.), Tuskegee University (Tuskegee, Alabama), and University of South Florida (Tampa, Florida).
WEFTEC is the largest conference of its kind in North America and provides water quality professionals from around the world with the best water quality education and training available today.
WEF InFLOW plans to take a similar approach as the successful Young Professional Springboard program, which identifies and engages young professionals in WEF activities (specifically the Midyear Meeting and the Utility Management Conference). Many of the program participants are now very engaged in WEF activities, have taken leadership positions on WEF committees, and are also progressing to leadership roles in their organizations.
In the pilot year, WEF InFLOW will initially focus on African American students. African Americans are currently a group that is the most underrepresented with respect to the percentage of the population versus percentage engaged in STEM. In future years, WEF InFLOW hopes to expand and include other underrepresented minority groups and schools, as well as leverage the program to engage in other activities in support of WEF’s Strategic Goals.
For the 2018 WEF InFLOW program, the following criteria was used to identify program participants:
- Full-time student currently enrolled in a college or university
- Beginning junior or senior year, or graduate student
- Majoring in Civil, Chemical, Mechanical, or Environmental Engineering, or Environmental Science
- Able to fully participate in program and engage with sponsors, New Orleans community, WEF members, WEFTEC attendees
Thanks to our sponsors (Arcadis, GlobalWET, Centrisys/CNP, Environmental Technical Sales, Inc. (ETEC), and the Milwaukee Water Council).