ANTHC engineers help ANSEP Acceleration Academy students learn about the science of clean water

June 17, 2016

This summer, the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium’s Environmental Health and Engineering is partnering with the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program (ANSEP) through their Acceleration Academy through engineering related demonstrations and learning activities. According to ANSEP’s website, the Acceleration Academy is “Designed to develop students academically and socially for college, while creating excitement around STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) degree programs and careers.” ANTHC employees Michael Nabers (ANSEP alumni) and Gunner Hodgson, Associate Engineering Project Managers, with the help of Assistant Engineering Project Managers and ANSEP alumni John Street and Shawn Takak, led a lesson on water filtration. Twenty-four Alaska Native high school students participated in the ANTHC water filtration activity. The students built gravity filters and watched a demonstration on traditional water treatment dosing testing. They collected water from seven locations around Anchorage and used a charge analyzer to determine the appropriate chemical dosing to treat the water. Michael Soltis, Lead Civil Engineer and Mia Heavener, Senior Civil Engineer with Design Engineering, both designed the filters that the students built and provided the water testing equipment. Through the activity the high school students determined the appropriate level of dosing to filter water to create quality drinking water. One of the students shared that what they learned from the lab, “… how the charge of the water can be changed by a polymer … was cool.” Another student shared that their favorite part of the activity was, “Building our filter and testing to see if our filter worked.” ANTHC will host another ANSEP Acceleration Academy group later this summer. Our Environmental Health and Engineering team also provides a summer internship program for college students studying engineering. Interns become team members in departments, and assist with projects while gaining valuable job skills and experience. Learn more about the ANSEP Acceleration Academy at

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