Blue Team Blog Series: Entry One; Karla Hernandez

Blue Team student Karla Hernandez reading the flow meter on the banks of the Bear Creek in Sheridan, CO

My time working here at Groundwork Denver has been a good experience that has taught me a lot about the environment. The best part of this experience for me so far has been water sampling. Water sampling is when we go to different lakes in Sheridan and we test this water for ph, dissolved oxygen, e-coli, among others. This experience was something I had done before but had very few knowledge of. Now at this job I have learned a lot about why we do it and why it’s important to take care of the environment. During water sampling we have also had the chance to be exposed to seeing wildlife. For example the first day we were out water sampling we got to see a beaver swimming, I have to admit it was really cool.

Another reason my experience has been amazing here is the team I’ve had the chance to work with. They have made my experience wonderful because I get to learn from them. Also I have had the chance to work with a lot of smart people that I have learned a lot about. They have taught me about the aseptic system, which means keeping your hands or anything from touching the inside of the bottle. This system is used so it doesn’t interfere with the bacteria we collect. We have also learned many things but we have learned a vast majority of new vocabulary, for example; riparian habitat, storm water, and TMDL (total maximum daily load), among others. Another cool experience we had was to get to go to the EPA lab to learn about what happens to the water samples we take. We learned that e-coli levels have been steady more than any other years.

During this experience we have also met people that work hard for the environment to be good. We’ve had the chance to meet engineers, park rangers, and many other wonderful people. Among this we got to see a lake that was only reserved for wildlife, it was fun because I had never heard that people we could that. Working at Groundwork Denver has been one of my best experiences, that will soon be over but I’ll be walking away with much more knowledge than I walked in with.