As Castleton community members make their way around campus this fall, a unique new addition can be noticed along the frequented path from Castleton hall to the Huden Dining Hall.
Where once sat severe erosion from water runoff at the end of the steep hill, now lies a series of water bars and rain gardens, a project made possible by Castleton Upward Bound students.
Compiled with native Vermont plants and local quarried stone, the sunken gardens with cascading levels will gently guide water flow to prevent runoff and erosion along the hill.
Funded through a $1,200 grant received by the students this past spring from the Vermont High School Leadership Greening Summit, the local high schoolers devoted a large amount of summer hours to the green-up project.
Upward Bound students who took part include Brianna Barker, Brockton Corbett, Thomas Bacher, Emily Ray, Brett Cross, Alexander Caraballo, Megyn Spafford and Zach Caraballo, who worked weekly with coordinator and Castleton professor Ann Honan to complete the project.
Showcasing best management practices for mitigating storm water runoff, the rain gardens will not only serve a necessary function on campus to prevent flooding and erosion, but it will also have an educational value.
Upward Bound is a federally funded TRiO program that offers challenging pre-college experiences to students of high school academic ability. Its goal is to generate the skills and motivation necessary for success in high school and college through an academic year and six-week semester residential program.