Baylor University, John Bunker Sands Wetland Center Form Partnership

Oct. 20, 2010

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Baylor University and the John Bunker Sands Wetland Center in Seagoville have formed a partnership to provide a collaborative research and classroom experience that will allow firsthand learning for Texas schools and universities.

The wetlands, which is one of the largest constructed wetlands in the United States at 1,840 acres, provides a natural form of wastewater treatment, while the wetland center will provide educational opportunities to local schools and universities through research, classes and tours of the facility and wetlands.

The collaborative research projects between Baylor and the center will begin next spring and will include studies on wetland ecology, plants and pharmaceuticals found in the wetland environment. Dr. Bryan Brooks, associate professor of environmental science and biomedical studies and director of environmental health science at Baylor, said Baylor students will specifically be involved in summer studies or projects related to undergraduate or graduates theses. Baylor classes also will use the wetlands for labs and field trips. Brooks, who serves on the wetland advisory committee, has taken a significant role in the development of the center by providing advice in research lab design and facilities.

A documentary also will be made and will include four different wetlands: the John Bunker Sands Wetland Center; Hacienda Barú Ecolodge, a wastewater treatment center in rural Costa Rica; the Lake Waco Wetlands; and Lake Whitney Wastewater Wetlands.

Media contact: Frank Raczkiewicz, Assistant Vice President of Media Communications, 254-710-1964.

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