Riverside Public Utilities | Education Programs – riversideca.gov

Customer-owned since 1895.
What is the Great Pacific Garbage Patch? How did it get there and what is the impact of this human-caused problem?
In small groups, students will sort and classify bags of clean trash to determine what can be recycled, composted or taken to a landfill. After learning the chemical recipe for plastics, and how plastic pollution affects our very own Santa Ana watershed, students, will use a single water bottle to engage in three art projects! Finally, students will consider multiple approaches to develop their models for a plastic-pollution solution. Students are asked to bring an empty water bottle from home. (Please make sure all water bottles are clean and have a cap!)
How does electricity turn on a light or start a hair dryer? Where does it come from and why should it be conserved?
This class breaks electricity down to an Atom and helps students find the answers to those questions. Students will engage in science and engineering practices with circuits, motors, and generators while learning how electricity works and how it gets from power plants to their homes. This class also includes a free science loan kit to be left in your classroom for two weeks so students can deepen their science explorations.
If the drought has ended, why should I be conserving water? Since we live in a desert climate, where does my drinking water come from and how does it get to me?
Students will learn the basics of the water cycle, how an aquifer works and the attributes of this vital natural resource, when they construct a model water cycle while investigating and discovering the answers to these questions.
How is wind energy transferred to electric energy? What variables determine how much energy a wind turbine can produce? What is energy transfer and how can we maximize a turbine’s energy output?
Working in small groups, students will engage in the engineering design process to design, create and test the efficiency of wind blades while answering these questions for themselves.
If you are interested in scheduling a virtual presentation, please email our education Coordinator Sharon Gutierrez at [email protected]
Visit the USGS website for interesting science-related materials!
Snap-circuit projects are a fun way to learn electric basics.
View photos from our summer STEM PULL Academy for local high school students and other various educational activities.
Engineering the needs of the present without compromising the needs of the future.
The Challenge
In October 2020, Riverside City Council adopted a new 5-year strategic plan, designed to set forth actions for achieving policy goals and help Riverside reach its potential.
The priorities identified in the strategic plan include developin¬¬g arts, culture and recreation opportunities; enhancing community well-being; providing economic opportunity; environmental stewardship; infrastructure, mobility and connectivity; and maintaining a high-performing government.
As the provider of Riverside’s drinking water and electric energy, the Riverside Public Utilities team, is uniquely positioned to play an instrumental role in reaching many of the goals outlined this 5-year plan, particularly in the areas of environmental stewardship and infrastructure.
Writing Prompt
Using the six sustainability goals as a guide, (view document here) participants will write an 800-1500-word essay discussing how the field of engineering could be used to achieve the sustainability goals outlined in the plan, specifically related to the provision of clean, reliable drinking water or reliable, affordable electric energy.
Regardless of the specific engineering field you reference in your essay (civil, environmental, mechanical, etc.) or which sustainability goal you address, essays must specifically reference possible projects that would be feasible to the City of Riverside.
The contest is open to individual students in grades 9-12 as of August 30, 2021, living in or attending public or private school in Riverside Public Utilities Service Area. (Verification required).
Submission Portal will open on August 30th, 2021 and close on December 30, 2021 5:00pm PST.

On March 10th and 12th, we announced the essay contest winners. All 3 students were called to the office and were surprised that they won the Essay Contest! We enjoyed getting to know the students and their parents and learned about their interest in the utility industry. Each student created a unique approach to writing their essay and these 3 students far exceeded our expectations. We can’t wait to do it again next year!