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Potsdam Prepared: Spring 2022 Updates

Adirondack Watershed Steward
Adirondack Watershed Institute
P.O. Box 265, Paul Smiths, NY 12970

Kacey Shackleton Photo

"In the position of a Watershed Steward, I inspected launching and retrieving boats for any organisms attached to them, while collecting data from boaters regarding their boat launch use patterns and any prior knowledge of invasive species removal procedures. I spent most of the summer stewarding at Carry Falls Reservoir, and was often visited by both boaters and non-boaters who were equally interested in the information I had to offer. I found myself discussing with them the impacts of invasive species on particular water bodies relevant to them in some way, which I feel strengthened their interest in our program, as well as their desire to keep these water bodies clean. I feel lucky to have spent this summer being able to instill some sense of urgency in the public regarding invasive species, as well as being a part of an organization dedicated to the longevity of the Adirondack environment."

Organization: Adirondack Watershed Institute
The Adirondack Watershed Institute is a not-for-profit organization run through Paul Smith’s College. The program’s main mission is to prevent the spread of invasive species to and from waterbodies in the Adirondack region, while also educating the public about various ecological issues relative to invasive species. This season, AWI had steward coverage at approximately 60 locations as well as 15 boat wash stations.

Contact:  Derrick Towne

About the Internship:
Being a Watershed Steward for the Adirondack Watershed Institute gave me a unique opportunity to help protect the natural environment around me, while also working on interpersonal communication skills, data collection, and time management. A typical work day includes setting up a table with information about invasive species and data about the specific water body, inspecting boats for organisms, and interacting with visitors. Providing visitors accurate information about the impacts, spreading, and precautionary measures to take regarding invasive species is a large part of a steward’s job. Coverage typically begins around the end of May and extends until the beginning of October.