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Potter Seibels Examines Pathogen Pollutant Levels of Waterways in the ACE Basin

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This summer, Potter Seibels, worked in the College of Charleston lab to assess the water quality of  several South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control monitoring stations. He worked closely with Dr. Vijay M. Vulava, a College of Charleston professor, and Cheryl Carmack, a scientist for the Charleston Water Keepers. Over 7 weeks, Potter tested the amount of enterococcus bacteria in the water of the seven testing sites. These bacteria live in the intestines of warm-blooded animals, thus if they are found, it indicates there is fecal contamination in the water. He also found the geometric mean for each site, which cannot exceed 35/100 mL to be considered safe for swimming. Ultimately, he found that two of the seven sites failed to meet their water quality standard. When asked for his best piece of thesis advice he answered, “do something you actually enjoy, so it doesn’t end up being a chore”.

Potter has already presented his findings to the College of Charleston and plans to defend his thesis at AMHS soon!

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