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A classroom video can be so powerful that sometimes it spurs you to action.
That's what happened when Nitish Katta recently watched a video in his AP Environmental Science class about places where safe, clean drinking water is scarce.
It was, in Katta's words, "truly eye-opening and informative."
"It got me thinking about how many people across the world don't have access to clean water, through no fault of their own, and what we can do to help," he said.
The New Berlin Eisenhower sophomore left teacher Emily Dethloff's class and started doing more research. That research led him to Charity: Water, a nonprofit charitable organization working to provide clean water resources to impoverished countries.
Katta started a fundraising campaign, with a goal of collecting $5,000 in donations, all of which would go toward building new wells.
"These wells will provide over 250 people with clean, safe, drinking water," Katta wrote on his fundraising webpage. "That's 250 lives that could be transformed for the better. 250 lives that you could change. By helping my cause and donating even a small amount, you would be giving many the gift of life."
His deadline was March 4. He raised the full $5,000.
Turns out Katta had some extra motivation and support at home: his father works for Siemens Corporation' water division. So Katta said, "I've always been intrigued by water and its value as a resource."
But he said the class video and instruction intensified his interest.
"What we've learned about in APES (AP Environmental Science) inspired me to see what I could do to help mend this situation in whatever way I could," he said.
Dethloff said she was impressed with her student's commitment to the cause. He also made some presentations to his class about clean water issues.
"Nitish is very motivated to see change in our world," she said.
"As a teacher it is very exciting to see our students taking concepts we are learning in the classroom and applying them in the 'real world,'" Dethloff added. "Especially if it means a chance to make a better life for other people."