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Katie Siech collects water samples along the Meramec River.

Siech Takes Science beyond the Classroom

Katie Siech collects water samples along the Meramec River.

Katie Siech’s passion for the environment is apparent in everything she does.

Along with running the science laboratory at St. Louis Community College-Wildwood, she teaches biology classes and serves as the Science Club adviser. When she’s not assisting students on campus, Siech enjoys advocating for the environment and promoting the field of environmental science.

Siech recently had a unique opportunity to share her passion for the environment through two presentations. In addition to presenting research on water quality in the Meramec River to the Water Quality Technical Unit at the Upper Mississippi River Conservation Conference, Siech spoke with students at STLCC-Wildwood as part of the campus’ Earth Week celebration. During these presentations, she explained how agricultural sites along the river channel correlate to biotic communities. The data she presented was collected while working as a graduate assistant with Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville and as a fisheries division assistant with the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Although Siech’s presentation covered a number of topics, the main takeaway focused on the interconnectedness of organisms in the environment.

“It’s important for people to understand that their actions have an impact on our environment,” she said. “While the conservation department is taking strides to address issues with water quality, there are things we can all do to prevent further damage to our stream channels. From planting trees along the river, to collecting data as citizen scientists and engaging our peers in environmental stewardship, we all must do our part to keep our rivers clean and preserve biodiversity.”

Siech joined STLCC in 2017. She holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Maryville University and a master’s degree in environmental science from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville.