Conrad and Hillcrest students spend their Saturday cleaning up pond

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It was a chilly Saturday morning, as students started to arrive at the parking lot behind Emmett J. Conrad High School.

They came from Conrad and Hillcrest High Schools to conquer the trash-filled Conrad Pond. Members of two chapters of The Environmental League came together to begin the clean-up of the pond, which is an overflow area of White Rock creek.

Seventy students came to make a difference, to start the process to reclaim the area from the trash and debris currently filling it.

The Conrad High School Environmental League chapter was born last year when a group of seniors taking Environmental Systems were looking for a water conservation project for the City of Dallas EEI Summit. A group of nine students chose the pond. They received full funding from the EEI Summit and also won a $1,000 grant from Earth Day Pitch.

Unfortunately, the pond was too muddy to start the cleanups last year, so they passed the torch to a group of rising seniors to continue the project. They had two cleanups last year across the street at the Harry Moss DORBA trail.

A student from Hillcrest was involved in the first clean-up at Harry Moss, and he founded the Hillcrest chapter. The second cleanup became a yearly competition between Conrad and Hillcrest called the Conservation Cup. The two schools come together to help with each other’s projects throughout the year.  Both schools will benefit from an outdoor learning space.

The students of The Environmental League have many projects in the works. Conrad has more clean-ups in the pond planned for the spring semester, a vegetable garden, starting a full recycling program, and a food sharing program.

Hillcrest is working on a Monarch Butterfly garden and has taken over the school’s recycling program. Of course, they both are preparing for The Conservation Cup, EEI Summit, and Earth Day Pitch. After all this is completed, the students from both schools will be enjoying a weekend camping trip to enjoy the beauty and wonder of the world they are working to improve.

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