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Valley Water Youth Commission

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Youth Commission Group

The Valley Water Youth Commission is made up of 21 high school students throughout Santa Clara County, each appointed by one of the seven board members. It is an official board advisory committee that assists the board with public policy, education, outreach, and all matters impacting Santa Clara County youth. The Youth Commission meets quarterly and each commissioner serves a 2-year term. For more information, please email us at [email protected].

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Click on the image to download the Virtual Job Shadow Day flyer

Join us for our first ever Virtual Job Shadow Day!

Thursday, February 18, 2021, from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

All high school students are invited to participate.

Registration for this event is now closed, however, if you are interested in staying on our mailing list for future events, please sign up here.

You can be a part of our fun and informative half-day virtual event!

  • Learn about the variety of jobs at the Santa Clara Valley Water District (Valley Water), including positions in the field of biology, engineering, accounting, environmental services, and much more.
  • Be matched with mentor(s) in a career related to your interest.

Contact the Education Outreach Team at [email protected] for more information.

Meet the Youth Commissioners

2020 - 2021 Youth Commission

District 1

  • Ishita Verma (Youth Commission Vice Chair)
  • Jonathan Xia
  • Paula Escobar

District 2

  • Colin Lim
  • Elise Mullen
  • Soren Ryan-Jensen

District 3

  • Anika Kulkarni
  • Vaibhavi Kulkarni
  • Matthew Walsh

District 4

  • Anousha Athreya
  • Aroshi Ghosh
  • Vedant Janapaty  

District 5

  • Alden Hughes
  • Hillary Chang
  • Michael Zhao (Youth Commission Chair)

District 6

  • Kathryn Bravo
  • Nilansh Dey Ghosh
  • Tammy Cao

District 7

  • Arushi Saxena
  • Ye'ela Bronicki
  • Yehchan Martin Kim

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Adopt-A-Bench

Valley Water’s Public Arts Program works in collaboration with community stewards and local artists to beautify Valley Water infrastructure through their expressive artwork. Currently, Valley Water is piloting the Adopt-A-Bench Project in which seven of our existing Valley Water benches throughout Santa Clara County will have updated interpretive art installed on them. This working group supports the AAB project via their creative input and involvement in project implementation and outreach. The previous Youth Commission cohort worked with local artist Paul J. Gonzalez to create the designs, provide feedback and assist with the painting of the bench artwork.

Creek Stewardship

The Creek Stewardship group plays an essential role in helping the community take action and responsibility for our local creeks. Members can participate, promote, and come up with creative ways to engage the community in large events especially during times of COVID-19 when large gatherings are discouraged. On a smaller but more involved scale you can help Valley Water develop a better system to recruit volunteers for the Adopt-A-Creek program or adopt a creek yourself! There’s a lot of room for creativity and improvement to give the community a strong sense that they can be part of the litter solution in our creeks. Plus, you can get outside and see the visible difference you are making!

Job Shadowing and Mentorship

The Job Shadowing and Mentorship group support the annual Youth Commission sponsored Valley Water Job Shadow Day, offering career exploration opportunities to high school students who job shadow professionals working in various Valley Water career fields. Job Shadow Day offers a chance to see what it is like working in a specific job or area of interest in the water industry. The subcommittee is responsible for social media promotion and school outreach to help spread the word on the various issues related to water, environment, and stewardship that impact young people. Throughout the school-year members of the subgroup help develop pathways for high school students to access mentorship opportunities with Valley Water

Youth Citizen Science Network

The Youth Citizen Science group was created to promote water-related Citizen Science projects to high school students throughout Santa Clara County. Citizen Science provides an opportunity for volunteers to collaborate with other agencies and to contribute data to scientific projects. Water Quality testing with a local environmental nonprofit was offered as an opportunity for Youth Commissioners to experience hands-on water quality testing at Steven’s Creek and the sub-committee members were looking for other opportunities to promote to youth throughout the county.

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