The Mayor’s Crew Program takes students beneath the Mississippi River

Area students learn how to use an ROV

Area students are exploring what’s beneath the surface of the Mississippi River, using an underwater robot.

The WisCorps crew, along with the Mayor’s Crew, were guiding an underwater excursion on Monday with an ROV… or a Remotely Operated Vehicle.

Students participated in a series of programs giving them the chance to discover recreational and environmental career opportunities.

Laurie Harmon, chair of UW-La Crosse’s Recreation Management & Therapeutic Recreation Department at UWL said “We so often hear that technology is a barrier. This is one opportunity where technology might not be a barrier. It might be an opportunity to get them connected to the outdoors.”​​​​​​

Students in UWL’s Recreation Management and Therapeutic Recreation classes have used the robot over the past several years to explore various underwater locations that are difficult or impossible to get to. It’s a tool they may encounter in future professions whether inspecting dock structures in strong current, exploring shipwrecks in difficult to access areas, or teaching youth about aquatic environments in parks.

The Mayor’s Crew program is a collaboration between WisCorps and the City of La Crosse. The program hosts three crews of local high school students to complete conservation and community revitalization projects around the City of La Crosse.  Students also engage in environmental education focused trainings and field trips like the program with the UWL Recreation Management & Therapeutic Recreation Department.

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