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Eight Aggies Clean up Lake for Spring Break    

March 27, 2023

Students from Texas A&M University at Galveston joined by students from other universities standing in front of trash pulled out of McKellar Lake in Memphis, Tennessee.
Students from Texas A&M University at Galveston joined by students from other universities standing in front of trash pulled out of McKellar Lake in Memphis, Tennessee.

By Taylor Bounds, Content Specialist

Over spring break, eight students from Texas A&M University at Galveston spent their time off cleaning up McKellar Lake in Memphis, Tennessee. Joined by other college students from across the nation, these Aggies participated in the Living Lands & Waters annual spring break cleanup. Over the organization’s 25-year-history, students and volunteers have removed nearly 13 million pounds of trash from our environment. 

Funded in part by the Texas A&M Foundation, students didn’t need to pay for travel or housing, and student Brittany McWhorter ‘24 was excited from the start. “I was immediately intrigued when I read that the opportunity was almost completely free and that we would be going to Memphis, Tennessee,” she said. “After attending the zoom Q&A session and doing some research on LL&W and Alternative Spring Break, I knew I had to go.”

Kevin Guzman, Student Development Specialist, said that he “wanted to promote resources that would encourage community and offer an outlet for any student searching for a spring break trip off-campus.” He said that the COVID-19 pandemic changed the access and resources to programming like this, but that it was inspiring to be able to promote an opportunity like this to students at the Galveston campus. 

With plastics found everywhere from the stomach of plankton to the Mariana Trench, and the Great Pacific Garbage Patch floating in the ocean, there is no one solution to this kind of pollution, but programs like this are of increasing importance. McWhorter told bldg. 311 “I’ve been to volunteer cleanup events in Galveston County but never one to this extent. I’m passionate about reducing and recycling, so this seemed like a great opportunity for me.” 

During the week-long Spring Break 2023 cleanup, students helped remove over 40,000 pounds of trash. That’s 40,000 pounds of trash that won’t go into our waterways, preventing the heaps of refuse from leaching potentially harmful chemicals into the environment and saving the hundreds of species that mistake trash for food

McWhorter said that the best part of her experience was making a difference.


Media contact:
Taylor Bounds

Texas A&M University at Galveston is the marine and maritime branch campus of Texas A&M University which educates nearly 2,300 undergraduate and graduate students in science, business, engineering, liberal arts and transportation. It is driving the development of the blue economy in the Gulf Coast Region and is a critical contributor to Texas A&M's rare land-, sea-, space-grant mission with nearly $10 million in research expenditures.

Texas A&M-Galveston is also home to the Texas A&M Maritime Academy, one of six state maritime academies and the only one in the southern United States, which trains over 400 cadets annually for maritime service and employment around the world.

Texas A&M-Galveston is located in Galveston, Texas on the Gulf Coast where it is surrounded by industry, environment and programs essential to fulfilling its special-purpose mission. Aggies are known for their deep commitment to the success of each other and their strong desire to serve.