MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The University of Wisconsin Sea Grant Institute is awarding $2.8 million to research and education projects on the Great Lakes.

The institute will fund 19 research projects and 29 outreach proposals in Wisconsin for the next two years, Wisconsin Public Radio reported .

Congress recently decided to restore $76.5 million in Sea Grant funding nationwide after President Donald Trump's administration proposed eliminating the program.

All of the chosen projects are essential to promoting education and protection of the Great Lakes, said Jennifer Hauxwell, assistant director of research and student engagement for Wisconsin Sea Grant.

"The first step is understanding what the problems are and science plays a key role in understanding what causes problems and also how to solve problems," she said.

One of the projects is an underwater photography program for at-risk youth. The program will combine science, art and therapy, said Ian Karl, an experiential program coordinator at Northwest Passage, a residential treatment center.

"Ideally, from a therapeutic sense, the water is helping take care of the kids," Karl said. "The ultimate goal is that after the kids make that emotional connection to water and they learn from science and some background on it that somewhere down the line the kids will flip that coin over and be the ones to take care of the water."

The program will receive $50,000 in funding and allow up to 50 kids out onto the water over the next two years, Karl said.

Photographs from the program are planned for display in a gallery at Northwest Passage and in an exhibit that will travel across coastal communities.

Other projects include creating a management analysis tool to restore the Green Bay ecosystem, working to forecast dangerous currents on Lake Superior's south shore and developing a new phosphorus model for Lake Michigan.

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Information from: Wisconsin Public Radio, http://www.wpr.org