Elementary school students from one local school district are learning about local ecosystems with hands on experience.
That’s thanks to a Mercyhurst University after school program called “Stem and Vine”
It’s an exciting time of year for elementary school students from the North East School District.
As the rainbow trout eggs they grew at school are now being released into Lake Pleasant
The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) donated 1,500 fish eggs to Mercyhurst University’s new after school program called “Stem and Vine.”
The director of the program said this initiative about more than just trout stocking.
“Hopefully through our Stem and Vine initiative, which really focuses on the agricultural community of North East and the local watersheds, we’re creating gateway opportunities for our students to become stewards of their land and watersheds that they reside in,” said Dr. Amy Burniston, director of Stem & Vine.
The land stewardship manager said this program brings students full circle from the classroom to hands on experience.
“The nice thing about this program is that there’s a large in classroom component so they’re learning about the trout and how they develop and what they require to thrive and seeing that through from start to finish here in the lake,” said Tyson Johnston , land stewardship manager for Western PA Conservancy.
Johnston said the 582-acre Lake Pleasant conservation area is open to the public.
“People of all ages can come out here enjoy fishing, hunting, hiking, bird watching any low impact activity like that so it’s great to see these young folks out here today be introduced to this preserve. And get closer to nature,” Johnston said .