Nice to meet you! My name is Taylor Weddington and I am an AmeriCorps service member serving as the Stormwater Education Coordinator for the Clean Water Education Partnership (CWEP). I recently relocated to Raleigh from my hometown of Wilmington, NC and I am excited to start my journey with TJCOG in the beautiful Triangle Area.
This past May, I graduated from the University of North Carolina Wilmington with a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science and a concentration in conservation. Throughout my studies, I learned about the complexity of environmental issues and how important equitable access to environmental services and education are to the wellbeing of our communities. I first became involved in environmental outreach through an internship with the North Carolina Division of Water Resources, where I focused on creating digital outreach materials for watershed restoration grants. This experience opened my eyes to water management projects in North Carolina and to the abundance of organizations working together to improve water quality.
To accelerate my knowledge of water restoration, I studied Water Resource Management and Sustainable Practices at the Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola in Cusco, Peru this past summer. Comparing the environmental issues and strategies used in Peru and in North Carolina was intriguing and left me with valuable insight. Although many issues stem from very different and complex sources, I noticed the solutions used in both places had an element of education and direct involvement with communities to instill behavior change. By giving current and future generations knowledge to enhance water quality and mitigate environmental issues, they are given the power to protect and advocate for what is important to them. This is a vital strategy to promote resiliency for all people around the world.
I am thankful that I will be part of CWEPs effort to ensure more people throughout partner communities are being exposed to direct and meaningful stormwater education, and to be part of a program that gives North Carolinians the tools to remain resilient.