Looking for Legionella in community colleges, Flint, and windshield washer fluid with the help of citizen science

Start Date: 
Monday, February 6, 2017 - 4:30pm to 5:30pm

1012 EECS

Presenter: 
Otto Schwake, Post-doctoral Associate, Departments of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Virginia Tech

Looking for Legionella in community colleges, Flint, and windshield washer fluid with the help of citizen science

While citizen science has long been embraced by certain disciplines, environmental engineering and microbiology are two fields where approaches utilizing lay-people for data acquisition and analysis have been scant at best.  If appropriately designed, however, studies on these topics can benefit greatly from the involvement of non-scientists, namely with field sampling.  In this presentation I will cover three research projects focused on the examination of Legionella occurrence in engineered environments: community college campus buildings across the US, tap water in and around Flint, MI, and automobile windshield washer fluid.  Through the use of citizen science in varying degrees for this research, distinct benefits are gained, not only from a research perspective, but also for the communities involved.

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