Why aQIQ program?

Air pollution is a global issue posing challenges to public health, the economy, and climate change. During Mongolia’s winter months, pollution levels are severe especially, posing heavy burden on the health of the population. Reducing air pollution is one of the top national priorities in Mongolia. Gaining knowledge about air quality is one of the first steps towards reducing air pollution, and protecting ourselves and our communities.

Program goal

AQIQ is an international program intended to: provide air quality training to youths using STEM curriculum, teach them how to use air quality monitoring devices, build capacity to carry out independent air quality research projects. The program works to prepare Mongolian youth to become community educators on air quality in their own communities by equipping them with the technology, knowledge, skills, mentorship and resources.

Program advantages

Technology

The Pods were developed by researchers in Mike Hannigan’s Research Group at CU Boulder. They are low cost technology that is currently being field tested and refined for air quality research use. As the Pods are being developed for research purposes, they continue to be a great tool for education. Pods can be used indoors or out and can use a wall outlet or battery for a power source. The sensors include temperature, humidity, PM1, 2.5, 10, O3, CO, CO2, light and heavy VOCs.

Learn more

Resources

Highlights

Winner of 2020-2021 Student Research Poster Day

Program results

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% of participants - women and girls

Testimonials

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Program activities

Recruiting university and high school students: We will work with local high schools and partner universities to select university and high schools students through application and interview process

Mentor training: We train university students on air quality and use air quality measuring devices to become air quality mentors.

High school training: Mentors will train and guide high school students on carrying out their own independent air quality research projects.

Poster Day event: Organize public events to showcase students’ air quality research projects to raise awareness and promote youth leadership in air quality in Mongolia.

More information

We work with university students and high school students and their respective institutions. University students of any background interested in air quality education can become a mentor by applying to the program and going through our training. High schools students are between 8-12 grade as the program curriculum may be too advanced for younger students. 

September – December: selected university mentors receive training and conduct independent air quality research projects

December – April: university student mentors train and support high school students in implementing their group air quality research projects

April – May: Symposium event where all students and university mentors present their research posters to the general public.  

The AQIQ program is implemented through the partnership between the Hannigan Air Quality and Technology Research Lab in the Mechanical Engineering Department of the University of Colorado Boulder, USA, National University of Mongolia’s Department of Environment and Forest Engineering, Public Lab Mongolia, a local non-governmental organization. Canada Fund for Local Initiatives supported the first year of the AQIQ program in Mongolia in 2020-2021. 

The AQIQ program in the United States has engaged about 50 university students, and over 2,000 high school students since its launch in 2013. 

The AQIQ Mongolia Chapter program launched in 2020, with six university mentors and 60 high school students from three local high schools in Ulaanbaatar. AQIQ Mongolia Chapter plans to  expand its outreach to other provinces in the coming years.