Published: February 2, 2016

    3rd Place Pelican Water Scholarship Winner: Alexandra Uzzo

    Alexandra Uzzo’s moving and evocative detailing of a world without water – and subsequently, color – deserved a well-earned 3rd place in our contest. Her slogan – “Water Paints the Planet – Save It” – connects the beauty of the earth with the urgency and enthusiasm that effective conservation requires, reminding us of Pelican Water’s core values.

    Alexandra Uzzo is a senior at Mount Saint Joseph’s Academy, where she maintains an impressive 4.237 cumulative GPA while filling her schedule with rigorous AP classes. She is a proud member of the school’s crew team and has an eye on a future in engineering. The $500 scholarship Alex won by placing 3rd in our contest will help her pursue her academic goals wherever she decides to attend in the fall of 2016. You can find out more about Pelican Water’s Scholarship Contest by clicking here.

    “Water Paints the Planet – Save It”

    Alexandra Uzzo

    Senior – Class of 2016

    Mount Saint Joseph’s Academy

    Flourtown, Pennsylvania

    Louis Armstrong sang of trees of green and red roses too.

    Elvis Presley’s crooned of Blue Suede shoes.

    The Beatles billowed about a Yellow Submarine.

    Jimmy Hendrix’s Purple Haze, Elton John’s Yellowbrick Road, Red Wine, Orange Crush, 99

    Red Balloons…Cindy Lauper’s True Colors.

    Whether in songs, photos, videos or visuals, ours is an incredibly colorful world. Colors tell

    stories, express emotions, and make life unique. We all gasp when Dorothy opens that door and

    walks out of her monochromatic house torn apart by a twister and into the beautiful Land of Oz.

    Colors resonate with people of all ages and generations because they are fundamental to the

    world we inhabit. Like water, colors are essential.

    A generation or two ago, young people were not able to see the colors of the world beyond their

    neighborhood. Today, the internet and social media have taught my generation to expect color

    splashed everywhere. We live in a vivid world of high definition television, supersized screens,

    and megapixel smart phones. Young people are saturated with colors of all shades and hues – so

    much so that they rarely consider what a colorless world might look like.

    A simple relationship exists between the world’s color and its water supply. The blue-green

    ocean, a tulip bouquet, the snow caps of the Rockies, a rainbow trout, a red robin, fields of green

    grass, life on a coral reef, a frog in the Amazon – without sufficient water – are all far less

    extraordinary. Without water – life’s colors leech, dull, and fade. Without water, the world’s

    canvas is not renewed.

    Perhaps one of the facts that lulls young people into “water complacency” is that water is the

    most plentiful resource on earth. We are taught that 70+% of the surface of the earth’s surface is

    water – interestingly about the same percentage found in the human body. Yet, it is a resource

    we overlook, take for granted, and repeatedly waste.

    We are fortunate in most parts of the U.S. that drought is an infrequent event – but when and

    where it occurs – colors are lost. From the forest fires that destroy the Pacific Northwest to acres

    of fallow farmland in California – droughts drains the colors of our world and directly affect the

    lives of millions of people, animals and plants.

    One way to instill a greater sense of urgency with water conservation among young people is to

    help them understand what a world would look like without color. I propose we could connect

    the two with the slogan “Water Paints the Planet – Save it!”

    The fundamental task is to make young people from regions unaffected by frequent shortages of

    water become more cognizant and ultimately passionate about water conservation. A program

    sponsored by Pelican Water can help them connect the dots between the “water behavior” in

    their daily lives and the “downstream effects” of that behavior. For example – running a sink

    and walking away might waste 15 or 20 gallons rapidly. What does that mean in terms of loss of

    color? What colors associated with new life might be lost? How many flower bulbs wouldn’t

    bloom? How many rainbow trout might not spawn? How many strawberry seeds might not

    germinate? A campaign to connect water conservation with coloring and renewing life could

    instill a greater sense of urgency. Pelican may be uniquely positioned to connect the ideas of

    water and delivering the colors of new life.

    My idea is to illustrate that poor water management by individuals can have profound effects on

    the colors of the world’s young and most vulnerable life forms. A marketing effort can be made

    to demonstrate that poor water conservation insidiously leeches the color inherent to nature’s

    youth and rebirth cycles and that lack of conservation is a “negative multiplier”, discoloring all

    aspects of the world we live in.

    Using social and standard media, I believe young people will understand that “Water paints the

    planet” and together we must “Save it” – otherwise our true new colors will be lost.