The scholarship program, Introducing Future Leaders to Opportunities in Water (InFLOW), will return to WEFTEC 2021 for its fourth year to continue to enhance diversity and inclusion in the water sector.

This year’s InFLOW program is a dual virtual and in-person program with a total of 39 scholars participating. The program begins in September and concludes at WEFTEC 2021 in Chicago.

InFLOW is comprised of two different tracks: CareerTech and STEMpath. CareerTech partners with community-based organizations to expose scholars in job readiness programs to the variety of rewarding career possibilities in water quality. STEMpath identifies scholars enrolled in undergraduate and graduate degree programs from historically underrepresented ethnic and racial groups.

Twenty-four STEMpath scholars will participate this year. Scholars represent a variety of different racial/ethnic groups and half of them are first generation college students in their family. They range from college freshmen to doctoral candidates in a variety of majors and come from 12 universities across nine U.S. states. The school represented are

  • Howard University (Washington, D.C.)
  • University of the District of Columbia,
  • Rutgers University (Brunswick, New Jersey),
  • Benedict College (Columbia, South Carolina),
  • Florida International University (Miami),
  • University of South Florida (Tampa),
  • Colorado State University (Fort Collins),
  • University of Nebraska-Lincoln,
  • University of Illinois-Chicago,
  • Loyola University (Chicago),
  • Utah State University (Logan), and
  • San Diego State University (California)

Fifteen CareerTech scholars will participating from GreenCorp Chicago, which is Chicago’s green-industry employment program with on-the-job training for individuals with barriers to employment.

InFLOW 2021

This year’s program introduces the scholars to different aspects of the water sector and potential career paths in water. It helps them learn how to find a job in water and networking with water professionals from different areas of expertise, roles within the sector, and geographic locations. The program is sponsored this year by Arcadis (founding sponsor), Xylem, ETEC, Suez, and CDM Smith.

Onsite at WEFTEC, the scholars will participate in a virtual tour of a local Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago facility, attend several events for students and young professionals, and attend the panel discussion, Journeys Through Water. This panel will connect the students with prominent leaders in the sector who will share their journeys and provide insight into how to succeed in the water sector.


About InFLOW

            During the last 4 years, InFLOW has had more than 100 scholars participate. Many scholars have gone on to continue their studies or work in the water sector. This year three InFLOW alumni participated in the WEF Water Leadership Institute (two of whom received a scholarship from InFLOW to continue their journey in water). And, a few alumni will be participating in the session, The InFLOW Experience: Getting in the Flow, that will be held in the SDG 6 Theater on Monday, October 18 from 12:30 to 1:00 p.m.

The program itself also is being recognized. This year InFLOW won a 2021 Power of A Gold Award presented by the American Society of Association Executives. The Power of A Awards recognize a select number of organizations annually that distinguish themselves with innovative, effective and broad-reaching programs and activities that positively affect America and the world.


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