Fostering Community Partnerships Through STEM Education

400 278 Stroud Water Research Center


Diane Huskinson

AVONDALE, Pa. — Students from Serviam Girls Academy spent a day at Stroud Water Research Center learning about water-quality indicators as part of the Stroud Center’s award-winning stream ecology program. This learning partnership was sponsored by Axalta Coating Systems, a global leader in coatings who is committed to STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education, the environment, and sustainability.

The fifth- and sixth-grade girls spent the morning collecting and identifying macroinvertebrates and learning why Stroud Center scientists use them as water-quality indicators. The seventh- and eighth-grade students spent the morning collecting water-chemistry data and making predictions about water quality.

During lunch, Lisa Miree-Luke, Axalta’s Head of Corporate Affairs-North America, encouraged the girls to seize opportunities for their future. The two groups switched places for the afternoon and the seventh- and eighth-grade girls had the opportunity to get over their fear of creepy crawly creatures as they collected macroinvertebrates in White Clay Creek.

This program gave the girls the opportunity to spend the day outside of their typical surrounding and explore the White Clay Creek watershed. As Serviam Girls Academy President, Peggy Heins noted, this experience enabled the girls to learn about taking care of their environment and to ask the questions encouraged in the STEM fields.

About Stroud Water Research Center
Stroud Water Research Center advances knowledge and stewardship of freshwater systems through global research, education, and watershed restoration and to help businesses, landowners, policymakers, and individuals make informed decisions that affect water quality and availability around the world. Stroud Water Research Center is an independent, 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.

About Serviam Girls Academy
Serviam Girls Academy is a tuition-free, independent Catholic middle school in the Ursuline tradition for young women of all faiths from low-income families. Serviam empowers students to succeed in high school and become leaders who serve their families and the needs of society through a dynamic academic program and the development of the whole person in an atmosphere of respect and responsibility. For more information, please visit

About Axalta Coating Systems – Celebrating 150 Years in the Coatings Industry
Axalta is a leading global company focused solely on coatings and providing customers with innovative, colorful, beautiful, and sustainable solutions. From light OEM vehicles, commercial vehicles, and refinish applications to electric motors, buildings, and pipelines, our coatings are designed to prevent corrosion, increase productivity, and enable the materials we coat to last longer. With 150 years of experience in the coatings industry, the approximately 12,800 people of Axalta continue to find ways to serve our more than 100,000 customers in 130 countries better every day with the finest coatings, application systems, and technology. For more information visit and follow us @axalta on Twitter and on LinkedIn.