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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: June 28, 2021
Contact: Theo Eggermont, Public Works Director, [email protected] (734) 222-6864
Students from Washtenaw International High School and Pleasant Ridge Elementary Win County-Wide Recycling Art Contest
WASHTENAW COUNTY, Mich., June 28, 2021 – The Washtenaw County School Recycling Program hosted its annual Recycling Art Contest this spring and has two winners to announce, one elementary school winner and one secondary school winner. Elementary students were asked to submit artwork based on the theme of zero waste. The theme for the secondary students was, “What would the world look like without recycling?” Students submitted artwork paired with a slogan to encourage recycling.
A first grader from Pleasant Ridge Elementary School in the Saline Area Schools District, Udhanya Jayaprabhu, won the elementary school contest with her artwork featuring an image of Mother Earth and a message to “Recycle the Things.” Her artwork will be displayed on a digital billboard located on I-94 near Exit 185 for Willow Run Airport from Monday, June 28th until Sunday, July 4th.
A student from Washtenaw International High School, Abigail Antonio, won the secondary school contest with artwork portraying a bouquet of flowers intermingled with plastic pollution, such as straws, utensils, and six-pack rings. Her artwork included a powerful slogan “Destruction of our Beauty.” We will be sharing Abigail’s artwork through digital media outlets and Washtenaw International High School will receive a $500 prize from Stevens Disposal towards a sustainable project at the school. “We’re pleased that so many students who are passionate about the environment and recycling are communicating that passion through art. Thanks to our partners, who help to foster and reward that passion,” said Theo Eggermont Public Works Director.
The School Recycling Program began in 2015 with a $32,000 grant funded through the DEQ (now EGLE). The program, now funded by Washtenaw County at no cost to its 30 participating schools, is a collaborative effort between the Washtenaw County Public Works Solid Waste Division, the Ecology Center, Recycle Ann Arbor, and Stevens Disposal. Environmental education provided by the Ecology Center invites students to learn more about recycling and waste reduction. Students take that recycling knowledge and practice home, leading to a stronger ethic of recycling county-wide. During the 2019-20 school year, 313,703 pounds of cardboard, paper, plastic, and aluminum cans were recycled from participating schools.
The annual Recycling Art Contest gives students an opportunity to creatively express what they have learned about recycling and waste reduction. We hope the contest has inspired students to think about how waste impacts our local environment and the ways in which we all play a part in protecting natural resources. We are confident that the winners’ artwork will inspire the community to do the same.
The mission of the Office of the Water Resources Commissioner is to provide for the health, safety and welfare of Washtenaw County citizens and the protection of surface water and the environment and to promote the long term environmental and economic sustainability of Washtenaw County by providing storm water management, flood control, development review and water quality programs. Visit the Office of the Water resources online at www.washtenaw.org/drains or call 734-222-6860.