Purpose of the WATERS Collaborative

Students coring trees at SSU's Fairfield Osborn Preserve investigate historical erosional processes in the upper watershed of Copeland Creek.


Watershed Academics To Enhance Regional Sustainability (WATERS) is a collaborative endeavor between Sonoma State University and Sonoma County Water Agency to undertake projects that enhance watershed management and academic training of students. The goals of the WATERS Collaborative are to:

  • create a trained and local workforce of SSU graduates with knowledge, expertise and interest in water management issues
  • increase and broaden SSU students, faculty, and staff contributions to SCWA projects and programs
  • enhance public awareness and understanding of water management issues and the value of the WATERS Collaborative
  • establish an administrative structure for an SSU-SCWA partnership that can effectively and flexibly meet the goals of the collaborative

Copeland Creek and the Laguna de Santa Rosa Watershed

Studies of Copeland Creek and the Laguna de Santa Rosa Watershed are emphasized by WATERS Collaborative. The SSU campus and Fairfield Osborn Preserve are located in the Copeland Creek's alluvila fan and headwaters, respectively, creating a watershed-wide outdoor laboratory for investigation and study by students and faculty. Copeland Creek empties into the Laguna de Santa Rosa, a wetland complex recognized by the Ramsar Convention in 2011 as a Wetland of International Significance. Given SCWA's long-term management interests in Copeland Creek integrated water management (flood control, water quality, habitat restoration, and recreation) and international importance of Laguna wetlands, the Laguna watershed is a natural area of focus for the Collaborative.

Laguna de Santa Rosa

For more information about the Laguna de Santa Rosa, visit www.lagunafoundation.org