Youth Leadership Council Member
Maria Fernanda Torres is an incoming sophomore at Boston University where she is pursuing a degree in biomedical engineering and marine science. At Boston University, she is part of the Intergenerational Literacy Program, a program guided by Wheelock College of Education & Human Development, where she works with adult learners to improve their literacy skills and connect them with resources that will guide them towards their goals.
Outside of school, she was part of Miami Waterkeeper, a non-profit organization that focuses on protecting and preserving South Florida’s watershed through citizen engagement and community action rooted in science and research. She was part of their leadership board for two years, where she shared information on South Florida’s water crisis with diverse audiences through civic engagement and advocacy and organized interactive environmental-related events. Maria was also part of EarthEcho International’s Water Challenge Ambassador Program and Leadership Board, where she brainstormed with other members of the committee to form environmental projects that can be implemented in schools and communities. Last year, Maria worked with EarthEcho’s Youth Leadership Council on the Future In The Bag, a pilot program organized by the YLC with a focus on reducing the consumption of plastic bags in grocery stores through a library system of reusable bags. She launched the program with another Water Challenge Ambassador at a local market in Key Biscayne called Golden Hog.
Additionally, Maria is still working on her Helping Pachamama Project, which she established in 2018. Every summer she works with Huandar, a rural community in Cuzco, Peru, to initiate environmental education (through water quality testing kits provided by EarthEcho International) with young children to protect and preserve the water quality of the River Urubamba. She has plans to expand her project by implementing a science education program in the community’s primary and secondary schools.