The Washington Suburban Sanitation Commission is asking the region’s future engineers for innovative ways to protect the area’s source water. The authors of the top two solutions will earn the annual Counihan/Starks Engineering Scholarships and priority consideration in WSSC’s paid summer internship program.

Utilities, environmental groups and government agencies alike agree that protecting source water and maintaining superior water quality is a shared responsibility of critical importance. Students are asked to identify the biggest threat to our water and provide perspectives on how best to resolve that threat.

Named in honor of current Commissioner Gene W. Counihan and former Commissioner Joyce Starks, the scholarships are awarded annually to college students who reside in WSSC’s service district and are enrolled in an accredited program at a college or university that leads to an engineering degree. Students can be enrolled in a school outside of the sanitary district, but must permanently reside in either Prince George’s or Montgomery County, Maryland. Up to two new scholarships in the amount of $1,000 each may be awarded and winners are eligible for additional awards of $1,000 each year for up to four consecutive years.

“The Counihan/Starks Engineering Scholarship Program seeks to support area students’ academic endeavors in the field of engineering and at the same time allows WSSC to build a pipeline of talent,” Counihan said in a statement. “This is an opportunity to encourage future engineers to consider the water and sewer industry and to remind everyone that WSSC employs a range of attractive positions from civil and structural engineers to inspectors… We hope these students will want to come back and make their careers at WSSC. ”

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