Student to present on water resource sharing

Sophomore Jordan Pinneke is the epitome of the phrase, “so much to do, so little time.”

Whether it is with her secretarial position for the Sustainable Campus Initiative Committee, her job as an administrative assistant at the Office of Campus Sustainability, working as an RA on campus, or as a desk attendant at the Recreation and Outing Center, Pinneke rarely has a spare moment.

On top of it all, the international studies and sustainability major found time to do research outside of class, and will present at the MSUM and State Student Academic Conferences April 14 and 15.

“It’s been said that the next world war will not be over oil, but over water resources, because those sources are so scarce,” Pinneke said.

Her presentation, called, “The Violation of Human Rights with the Privatization of Water,” delves into the topic of water resource sharing, which the United Nations has declared a human right.

“I’m hoping to shed light on the topic,” Pinneke said. “(People) just turn on their tap without realizing where it’s coming from. I want people not to take (water) for granted.”

Having access to clean water is something those living in developed countries are accustomed to. It’s an integral part of daily life. Turning on the tap to brush our teeth, fill a glass or take a shower is something done with ease. Yet those in third-world and developing nations are fighting for the right to gain access to clean water – something that Pinneke says is being hindered by transnational companies.

The topic first sparked Pinneke’s interest in professor Andrew Conteh’s Introduction to Global Issues class. She says that he, “definitely has the resources to help” with her research.

After first meeting Conteh at last year’s Student Academic Conference, Pinneke is looking forward to making more connections with students, faculty and staff at this year’s conference.

“It brings a lot of intellectuals together,” she said. “It’s the one time of year that people who have done research can get together and share what they’ve done.”

Pinneke hopes her research and experience will lead to a career with the United Nations.

“It has definitely introduced me to what the UN does,” Pinneke said.

For more information on the Student Academic Conference, visit