About The WoW Confluence Project


For the 2015-2016 school year we have moved to a new blog site. Come check us out here!


The 2015 Youth Water Summit was a huge success!! 230 students from eight northern Idaho high schools shared their research of and solutions to community water resource issues. Over 50 judges from diverse sectors were present to speak with the students about their work and offer constructive feedback.

All of this was possible because of our generous sponsors, especially Avista Foundation and Decagon Devices. Thank you!


The University of Idaho’s Waters Of the West (WoW)  Confluence Project brings field-based watershed science to high school classrooms in Northern Idaho. Our mission is to increase secondary student scientific knowledge and critical thinking skills through field experiences in their local watersheds. After three field experiences, focusing on water quality, service learning and snow science, we challenge our students to develop their own research project focused on a local water resources issue of their choice and to propose a creative, science-based solution to it. In the spring, a confluence of students will occur at University of Idaho for a two-day Youth Water Summit, where they will share their watershed investigations and solutions. We partner with local organizations and government agencies to expose our students to a wide range of expertise and examples of local solutions to community water resource challenges.

Final Sticker

Click here for information or to get involved in this project.

To see what the students are up to, select a school from the “Confluence Schools” Menu at the top of the page. Check out photos, student reflections, analysis of field collected data.

Our community partners include The Lands Council, IDAH2O, Twin Lakes Improvement Association, Idaho Fish and Game, the Coeur d’Alene Tribe Lake Management Department, Idaho Department of Environmental Quality, and many more!

Meet our people!

Read more about The Confluence Project!

Screenshot 2015-04-02 09.30.25


Screenshot 2015-03-31 23.05.41

*The Confluence Project is primarily funded by a National Science Foundation GK12 Grant (DGE – 0841199). Additional funding has been received from a Science Education Grant from the Idaho State Department of Education and Idaho EPSCoR.


9 thoughts on “About The WoW Confluence Project

  1. kristen lowe

    most valuable thing i learned…?

    was how one small creek could contribute significantly to the overall well being our local waters

    how does water quality impact me and my community…?

    if our waters are in poor condition its likely anyone who is in them is too.In other words, lakes that are extremely polluted can cause people and other creatures in and near the lake to become sick too.Besides pullutiin, other factors like excess sediment and light can cause a hard time for the organisms in the waters.

    how was this trip different than other typical science labs…?

    it was just nice to be outside for a change.that gave be a hands on experience.its hard to understand what i am supposed to be learning when i can not physically see it.

    favorite part…?

    i loved fishing and getting to look for tghe bugs,we found a worm that danced:)It was great to get out of school

    how does the field trip help shape my understanding of water resources..?

    it just shows me how important out waters actually are and how easily little things like ranching can have such a major impact on them

    has the field trip influenced my viewpoint on water resources…?

    i always thought water resources were important just because it was engraved into my head by teachers that would go on and on about pollution,recycling,habitat restoration,and yada yada.. but now i had the chance to actually see why.Not only are our local waters in danger, but so are other resources all over and it is up to us to do something.

  2. Young Living Lavender Farm: It was an amazing opportunity to see a new place in our community. I didnt even know that that place existed! It was really cool to see how the lavender farm used the local water to make their products and how they recycled the water.

  3. We went to the Young Living Lavender Farm on November 5, 2014 with our honors biology classmates from SMHS. On the trip we learned how essential oils were made. They make oils such as Lavender, Melissa, and Tansy. The oils are used for better health and wellness. Water is used during the disstilation process and to irrigate the plants. The oils were very interesting and I loved the field trip!

  4. Saint Maries High School
    Young Living Lavender Farm

    We went to the Young Living Lavender Farm on November 5, 2014. I had a lot of fun in this trip. We learned about the different plants that they extract the essential oils from. It was interesting to find out that Lavender isn’t the crop that they produce the most of. They produce more Melissa. It was amazing to see all the fields and imagine that they were all planted by hand! I can’t even image how hard that would be. This field trip was a great experience and it has got me very interested in essential oils.

  5. Our field experience for Saint Maries Honors biology was about The Young Living farm. We learned that more stress makes more oils. The chemicals of weeds killer can get into water streams ,so there goal is clean planting technics. The stress is from cutting, cooking ,and steaming the plants.

  6. 1.better because it was different then the classroom.
    2.Streams need to be healthy to help the environment.
    3.Service learning is the same as community service are the same.
    4.Good water quality and healthy ecosystems.
    5.That students can do work instead of learning.

  7. This field trip was to the Youth Water Summit. This experience was really fantastic. It brought all of us students together to share of what we learned about our projects. We presented in front of peers, judges, and other students from other schools. We went to the Wild and Scenic Film festival and watched videos about water resources. We stayed at Idaho Inn which was fantastic and had breakfast there. Then all the students were put into groups to make a solution of a problem. We then debated this topic with another group for which group has the best solution. Overall the field trip was the best one and I am very glad to be part of it. All of the students worked very hard on their project.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s