Lycoming College’s Clean Water Institute

LOYALSOCK TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- Students in Lycoming County are helping keep streams and waterways clean in their community.

As a child, Sarah Musheno would fish in the streams near her house. Now a senior at Lycoming College, she's helping to protect them.

"When I was a kid, you know, you go in and you play and you're not really focused on how well the water is doing or anything. It's definitely an experience to open your eyes to what is good, what is bad, and what you can do to help out," Musheno said.

Musheno and 10 other students are spending a good portion of their summer interning through the college's Clean Water Institute. Newswatch 16 met up with a few of them at Mill Creek, just outside of Williamsport.

"They write reports and put up posters, and it's all part of showing you what an aquatic biologist does in real life," said Mel Zimmerman, Lycoming College.

Lycoming College works hand in hand with several organizations to make sure this creek and the animals in it are healthy.

According to the students, a good indication of a healthy stream are insects like stoneflies.

"These are commonly fish food I guess you could say."

"Crayfish, stuff that these guys eat all depends on water quality," Jen Schwartz said.

At Lycoming College, senior Jen Schwartz showed us an eastern hellbender.

"It's the largest amphibian in North America. They get up to two and a half feet long, but basically (they are) a snotty thing that lives in the water," Schwartz said.

For Schwartz, this internship is more than just experience, it's an opportunity to make a real difference.

"You know, just take pictures of them before, but now we get to pit tag them and actually benefit the animal which is cool."

The annual internship program through the college's Clean Water Institute continues into next month.

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