Karen Wilson, a USM professor of environmental science and policy, joined with several of her students and children from Portland's Longfellow Elementary School to examine how people change the quality of nearby water, often without even knowing it.
Together, they recently visited Capisic Pond. They looked at the watershed, the level of pollution and what's growing there.
USM student Trevor Brakey told Collins he chose to become an Environmental Studies major because of his interest in the ecosystem's many moving parts. He described it to Collins as "a continuous fascination with how it all interacts together."
While tested the children's water, some some skimmed the water's surface with nets or collected frogs.
"If the kids are having fun and asking questions that's what we want," Wilson said told Collins.