A project by a Quad City area student is getting attention from a worldwide group dedicated to finding answers to the world’s problems by working with students.
Katlin Truelsen, a junior at Central DeWitt High School, was recently chosen to be a Global Youth Institute Scholar. “I got involved (with the Institute) through our local Clinton County Farm Bureau. I’m a part of a youth media team there, and the Global Youth Institute is a larger scale version of the Iowa Youth Institute, which I participated in back in April in Ames,” Truelsen said. “This one is in Des Moines, and it brings in students from all over the world – professors, environmental professionals – to discuss the papers that students wrote regarding world issues and the solutions they have for them.”
Truelsen only found out last month that she was named one of the Global Youth Institute’s Scholars. “In April, I presented my paper, I’m out in Ames. In early September, they sent me an e-mail saying that I’d been chosen to move on to the Global Youth Institute,” she said. “I guess my paper had a solution that they thought could potentially be used in the future, so they want to hear more about my paper and my solution for it.” Her paper focused on water sanitation issues in Lebanon and contained solutions residents could use to ensure the safety of their water, including testing and treatment kits.
Learning which countries were dealing with water scarcity led her to the subject of her paper. “I was doing some research with my history teacher, we were kind of talking just in general about countries that were struggling, and we looked up the top 10 that were struggling at the time and that (Lebanon) was one of them,” she said. “I thought Lebanon was an interesting country.” She’ll present her paper along with her fellow Scholars. “I’ll be presenting to another group of students who also have a paper, just a three to five-minute presentation. They will ask questions on my paper, and we’ll have a discussion back and forth about any questions they have. Then other students will also be presenting their paper and I’ll ask them questions as well.”
Truelsen isn’t sure she wants to continue working with water projects as a career, but she says the topic is vital. “I do think it is important to spread awareness about this; many countries do struggle with it. I think it’s an important thing that we should touch on and inform students about.”
For more information on the Global Youth Institute, click here.