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EPA boosts environmental learning at Norfolk State University and Hampton University

Release Date: 07/16/2008
Contact Information: Donna Heron 215-814-5113, heron.donna@epa.gov

(PHILADELPHIA, July 16, 2008) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today a new partnership with Norfolk State University, Hampton University and the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality that will enhance environmental research and teaching at the two universities and fund projects benefitting their local communities.

EPA, state and university officials signed a memorandum of understanding at a ceremony today at Norfolk State University, formalizing their partnership. EPA also announced a $50,000 grant to Norfolk State University and a $49,995 grant to Hampton University for environmental education projects.

"EPA recognizes that we, too, can play a role in supporting high quality learning opportunities for students," said Donald S. Welsh, EPA's mid-Atlantic regional administrator. "By linking education to hands-on work experiences, we can create enthusiasm and a greater appreciation for the environment and even spur interest in environmental careers."

The MOU establishes an EPA-founded program called LEAP -- Linking Environmental and Academic Programs -- at both universities. Through Norfolk State University's LEAP project, ninth grade students in the Hampton Roads area will have an opportunity to learn more about air pollution and environmental science. At Hampton University, LEAP will enhance a graduate curriculum and air quality research activities within the Hampton Roads area.

For more information about the LEAP program, please visit: http://www.epa.gov/region03/LEAP/index.htm.