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2022 Service-Learning Symposium: Toxic Chemicals in Our Community

Toxic Chemicals in Our Community

Authors: Conlan Bertram and Rachael Thompson

Faculty Supervisor: Robin L. McLachlan, Ph.D.

Community Partner: Glynn Environmental Coalition


Glynn County is home to multiple superfund sites and factories that release these chemicals. Superfund sites are contained; informing the community about the chemicals in the area is important. These chemicals can be present in our seafood and pose a threat to our health. I reached out to the Glynn Environmental Coalition (GEC) because I wanted to help further their education work. After talking to Rachael Thompson, the executive director, we decided that creating a social media campaign about the toxic chemicals that in Glynn County would be best. I worked on synthesizing data from different governmental websites; the CDC and EPA were the primary sources. I looked at chemicals that are in the water and soil and at chemicals that can be found in the air. The chemicals that I investigated were mercury, PCBs, hydrogen sulfide, Mercury, PCBS, Toxaphene, Sulfur Dioxide, and Hydrogen Sulfide. My project allowed me to demonstrate and further develop my abilities to work with community partners to develop and implement goals. I was able to communicate to a general audience of about the environment, which was one of the main focuses of the class. While I do not plan on working with the GEC with creating and publishing the social media campaign, I know that it will be published within the next semester. I hope that this will encourage another student to continue the project to further educate the citizens of Glynn County.