Environmental Restoration does not happen in a vacuum!
Relationships with local communities, particularly organizations and locations where children and families live, work, and play, are vital to the advancement of science. This includes schools, museums, childcare centres, churches, playgrounds, local businesses, and numerous non-profit organizations serving children and families’ interests. When recruiting youth for research subjects, it is typical practice in our field to collaborate with local groups. It is also common practice to incorporate them in our strategies to distribute research beyond academic journals. Our influence and effectiveness depend on developing research collaborations with local communities.
We feel that research laboratories might benefit from recognizing the value of youth contribution!
Involving young students in scientific research is an issue of growing importance for science. Young scientists can offer valuable information in the development of scientific research. Developing a youth-friendly space defined by a safe, welcoming atmosphere in which the perspectives and contributions of all parties are acknowledged and valued is essential to engaging effectively for young researchers. This implies that youth and adults feel at ease and welcome to themselves.
Within the Laboratory of Environmental Engineering for the BLUE-GREENWAY Project, students are encouraged to share their remarks, results, and comments with the rest of the team. The BLUE-GREENWAY Project aims to engage youth in scientific research projects, from the initial planning and grant writing phases through project completion and dissemination of results.
A harmonic and productive environment is developed. We ensure that the targets and the objectives of the BLUE-GREENWAY Project are transparent and known to everyone engaged with the project. Our target is to transfer knowledge and experience in the Water Quality Restoration Approaches and broaden the vision of young researchers in an ecologically friendly footprint. In this way, students will remain motivated to pursue science and adopt an environmentally friendly lifestyle after such an experience.
There are no regulations or expectations regarding the performance of research students!
By reading and debating a book or scientific paper with their mentor, some students gain only limited experience. However, most students are attracted to their first research team and describe the lab as a stimulating workplace. Within the Laboratory of Environmental Engineering, they begin by studying fundamental procedures, such as adsorbance of ammonium and orthophosphate from natural and modified clay-based materials and biochar formations, and the most diligent students end up with their own project.
Below is the testimony of Mr. Leonidas Fintzos, undergraduate student of the Civil Engineering Department “I am happy I gained the expertise to work in a Laboratory Environment. Despite the long hours we spent in the laboratory, I made friends under a very warm environment. In parallel, I was under my professor’s constant direction, and I was able to share my ideas with the team”.