There’s Still Time! Apply to the McNair Program @RU this Spring 2023 Semester

The McNair Scholars Program at Roosevelt has extended the deadline for recruiting new scholars for this years cohort. McNair is a federally funded research based program that aims to develop a student’s understanding of research and supports their research efforts in their respective fields (while also providing a $2,800 stipend). We also assist in the graduate application process by providing GRE prep material and one-on-one guidance throughout the process.

Any students who like to do research and are first generation and low income, OR from an underrepresented group, please email Noe Ramirez, McNair Program Coordinator, for more information.

nramirez19@roosevelt.edu

mcnair@roosevelt.edu  

Posted in education, fellowships, Roosevelt, science, students | Leave a comment

Creating Resiliency Through Innovation

by Keira Carpenter for SUST 350

Have you ever considered how resiliency might relate to sustainability? First, let’s break these terms down and explore how they are interconnected. Resiliency is the concept of having the capacity to recover from challenging situations. Sustainability is the idea of being able to sustain something (i.e. the environment, one’s life, human relationships, etc.) long term. Without resiliency, it is difficult to create a sustainable ecosystem here on Earth. When communities face challenges, resiliency is what allows them to sustain themselves and make it through the difficulties that they experience.

Creating resiliency is something that many people in the fields of sustainability and community development have focused on. One example of this is Eden Place Farm and Nature Center in Chicago, which grows food locally and provides it to the Fuller Park community on the city’s South Side. This creates resiliency by offering healthy options close to home that can nourish areas where it may be difficult to access good food. This is just one of many examples of local communities coming together to find a way to thrive in the wake of inequities.

One important piece of finding resilience is innovation. Research plays a vital role in exploring ways to support communities through their challenges and finding new ways to solve old problems. One pretty cool example of this is the possibilities we can find in mushrooms. Mushrooms have a unique ability to break down waste and pollutants. This even includes plastic waste which has been a growing concern amid our climate change emergency. Yale University conducted a study on this in which they found that the common oyster mushroom can break down plastics while still growing into a viable mushroom for consumption. This means that the waste produced by using mushrooms can also be used for other purposes such as providing food.

One challenge that comes along with waste in particular is that the environment of landfills is void of the oxygen levels that are necessary for the waste to decompose. The good news is that mushrooms can thrive in that environment and are fit to be used as decomposers in these settings. Consequently, there are virtually no barriers to utilizing mushrooms in this capacity.

This is just one example in which innovation can be used to foster resilience within communities. Landfills contribute significantly to pollution and cause harm to the environment through the release of gasses like CO2 and methane. Through the use of mushrooms, it is possible to break down waste more quickly and effectively than our current infrastructure allows.

So what can we do to make sure we are contributing to resilience in our communities? Do your research! Innovation is out there and there might be a way of tackling a problem that you haven’t yet thought of. For example, you may be able to grow your own mushrooms at home for the purpose of breaking down waste. We can create resiliency in our own neighborhoods by connecting with others, making sure our neighbors are housed and fed, and being mindful of how waste is produced and managed, and offering green spaces for all to enjoy. These are just a few examples of how this can be approached.

Resiliency comes down to how community members support one another while fighting for their communities. Inequities abound but the spirit of the communities in which they exist are effervescent. There are many ways to build resiliency within communities but it starts with community members embracing their role as sustainable citizens. If we pay close attention, nature has a way of showing its own resilience to inspire us to find our own.

References

Maharjan, H. (2021, February 15). An edible mushroom that can eat plastic – say what now? Natura Mushrooms. Retrieved November 8, 2022, from https://naturamushrooms.com/blogs/news/mushroom-that-can-eat-plastic

Vasarhelyi, K. (2021, April 15). The hidden damage of landfills. Environmental Center. Retrieved November 8, 2022, from https://www.colorado.edu/ecenter/2021/04/15/hidden-damage-landfills

Vasarhelyi, K. (2021, November 4). Plastic eating mushrooms. Environmental Center. Retrieved November 8, 2022, from https://www.colorado.edu/ecenter/2021/11/04/plastic-eating-mushrooms#:~:text=Researchers%20have%20now%20found%20that,an%20at%2Dhome%20recycling%20system.

Kiera Carpenter (BA ’24) is a SUST Student Associate in the Department of Sociology & Sustainability in the College of Arts & Sciences at Roosevelt. She is also the RU Student Steward for 2022-23 in the Resilience Studies Consortium, where she attended the 33rd Headwaters Conference earlier this month. Her essay was an assignment for the Fall 2022 course, SUST 350 Service & Sustainability.

Posted in courses, education, food, pollution, recycling, research, students, waste | 1 Comment

SUST Alum Dan Lyvers (BA ’21) Talks Sustainability, Organizational Leadership, & Wastewater Management, 12/13 @RU

Please join this collaboration between the Colleges of Business and Arts & Sciences @RooseveltU as we explore different aspects of the critical role of sustainability in today’s business world. Three distinguished RU alumni from the Sustainability Studies program are giving special guest presentations each Tuesday from 11/29 to 12/13, from 5-6pm CST, in Prof. Bob Tenuta’s MGMT 390 Contemporary Topics in Business class. These sessions are open to the RU and Resilience Studies Consortium community.

Tuesday 12/13 (WB 1212 + Zoom): Corporate/Industrial Sustainability — from Operations to Management to Organizational Culture

Guest Speaker: Dan Lyvers (he/him), BA in SUST ’21, Chief Operation Engineer II for the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD), operations supervisor of the Stickney Water Reclamation Plant (LinkedIn info)

Dan has 20 years of experience in the wastewater treatment sector and many years prior to that in construction and building operations. As a manager, engineer, and leader, Dan is responsible for the day-to-day operation, staffing, and maintenance of the world’s largest wastewater reclamation plant. He is an expert on the TARP “Deep Tunnel” system that manages stormwater and sewage throughout Cook County, and highly knowledgeable about the sustainable aspects of its processes.

Zoom link: https://roosevelt.zoom.us/j/93700019308

Posted in alumni, business, cities, courses, education, green jobs, pollution, presentations, Roosevelt, waste, water | 1 Comment

Need Snacks? (Um, Yeah!) Come to RU Green Tonight 12/7 @5pm in AUD 1035

A friendly and timely message from the leaders of the RU Green student organization:

Hey, RU students — Our final event of the semester is happening at 5pm tonight 12/7 in AUD 1035. It will be a de-stress event where we will relax, enjoy snacks, and discuss future RU Green plans together! We know the end of the semester is a crazy time, but we’d love to see you all. Come take a break from studying and give yourself some time to relax!

We will be discussing the open exec positions RU Green has for next semester. We will be having a full overturn of our board by the end of this academic year (after Spring ’23 semester). To complete a smooth transition we will spend next semester (Spring ’23) “onboarding” our new executive board members to the position. This means they will be completing tasks alongside the current board member and will not be fully responsible for the role yet. Their role will become full time beginning in the Fall ’23 semester. HOWEVER, a president is needed for the Spring ’23 semester, and can be trained during the Winter Break and/or the Spring ’23 semester. 

If you are interested in one of our open roles which includes President, Vice President, Social Media Manager, Communications Coordinator, and Administrative Assistant, come to tonight’s meeting, fill out the application, and/or reach out to us with questions! We’d love to see you make your mark in creating a greener RU by working at the forefront of RU Green. 

Below is the link to the application, as well as descriptions of each role. Questions? Email rugreenclub45@gmail.com

To apply: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSc7jVYBNdrpjzGxyas4yIzeGfBYeZclJjJOb9KL5Em06IRZKw/viewform

Posted in activities, education, green jobs, service, social justice, students | 1 Comment

Sustainability & Business: SUST Alumni Share Professional Perspectives this December, Tuesdays @5pm

Please join this collaboration between the Colleges of Business and Arts & Sciences @RooseveltU as we explore different aspects of the critical role of sustainability in today’s business world. Three distinguished RU alumni from the Sustainability Studies program are giving special guest presentations each Tuesday from 11/29 to 12/13, from 5-6pm CST, in Prof. Bob Tenuta’s MGMT 390 Contemporary Topics in Business class. These sessions are open to the RU and Resilience Studies Consortium community.

Upcoming Speakers

Tuesday 12/13 (WB 1212 + Zoom): Corporate/Industrial Sustainability — from Operations to Management to Organizational Culture

Guest Speaker: Dan Lyvers (he/him), BA in SUST ’21, Chief Operation Engineer II for the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD), operations supervisor of the Stickney Water Reclamation Plant (LinkedIn info)

Dan has 20 years of experience in the wastewater treatment sector and many years prior to that in construction and building operations. As a manager, engineer, and leader, Dan is responsible for the day-to-day operation, staffing, and maintenance of the world’s largest wastewater reclamation plant. He is an expert on the TARP “Deep Tunnel” system that manages stormwater and sewage throughout Cook County, and highly knowledgeable about the sustainable aspects of its processes.

Zoom link: https://roosevelt.zoom.us/j/93700019308

Past Speakers

Tuesday 11/29: Sustainability, Corporate Social Responsibility, and Human Rights

Guest Speaker: Alison Elzinga (she/her), BA in SUST ’21, Human Rights Specialist at Archer Daniels Midland (LinkedIn info, SUST blog profile)

Alison Elzinga pursued a second bachelor’s degree in Sustainability Studies at Roosevelt University, graduating in 2021, after earning her first degree in International Relations with an emphasis in Globalization Studies from Ohio State University in 2020. While at Roosevelt, she applied to be in the mentorship program where she was connected with a mentor who works for Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), a large, corporate agriculture firm. Through this mentorship, an internship opportunity arose at ADM for the summer of 2021, which eventually led to a job offer with the company.

Alison is currently working with ADM as a human rights specialist within the sustainability department, which essentially synthesizes both of her degrees into one position. She uses data analysis to identify where the highest risk lies within a global supply chain, then works to mitigate or eliminate that risk. One of her current projects involves identifying human rights risks within the vanilla bean trade industry in Madagascar and working with people throughout the supply chain to come up with programs to mitigate risk among the workers.

Please check out Alison’s slideshow (below) and her session’s zoom recording.

Tuesday 12/6 (Zoom only): Sustainability, Philanthropy, and the Mission of Non-Profits

Guest Speaker: Stephanie Eisner (she/her), BA in SUST ’13, Program Officer at Caerus Foundation (LinkedIn info)

Stephanie assists with the planning and grantmaking of Board-directed philanthropic initiatives, and co-leading growth in the Foundation’s environment and education programs. She also leads the Foundation’s internal reporting program capturing and visualizing historical, current, and future giving trends and impact.

Please check out Stephanie’s slideshow (below) and her session’s zoom recording.

Posted in alumni, business, courses, economics, events, green jobs, presentations, Roosevelt, students | Comments Off on Sustainability & Business: SUST Alumni Share Professional Perspectives this December, Tuesdays @5pm

Progress Report on RU’s Fall 2022 Sustainability Planning: Linking Campus Sustainability to Human Rights & Social Justice

Three students from SUST 350 Service & Sustainability — Kiera Carpenter, Sophia Gallo, and Kayla Nelson — presented their Progress Report on our 2022 Sustainability Strategic Planning efforts this fall at the Joseph Loundy Human Rights Project Symposium & Luncheon on Wed 11/30/22 at the Chicago Campus. View their slideshow here: SUST 350 Loundy Symposium Slide Presentation 2022-11-30 (pdf)

Faculty/Staff/Alumni Campus Sustainability Survey & Feedback

RU faculty, staff, administrators, alumni, trustees, and allies — please take just a few minutes to provide us with your ideas, suggestions, and/or questions about sustainability @RU as part of our Fall 2022 strategic sustainability planning effort this semester. Your answers will provide valuable information as we identify initiatives and set new goals for improving sustainability at Roosevelt.

Please click on this link to provide your feedback. Your time and thoughtful responses are greatly valued!

Student Campus Sustainability Survey

RU students — do you have four minutes to spare for a good cause? Your fellow students in SUST 350 Service & Sustainability this fall have designed a short and incredibly fun to take student survey as part of RU’s strategic sustainability planning effort this semester. Your answers will provide valuable information as we identify initiatives and set new goals for improving sustainability at Roosevelt. We’ve had over 200 responses thus far, but would like to get a lot more!

Please click on this link or the QR code below to take this anonymous student survey. Your time and thoughtful responses are greatly valued. Thank you!

Posted in alumni, courses, education, events, humanities, planning, policy, presentations, Roosevelt, social justice | Comments Off on Progress Report on RU’s Fall 2022 Sustainability Planning: Linking Campus Sustainability to Human Rights & Social Justice

Sustainability & Human Rights: Attend the Joseph Loundy 2022 Human Rights Symposium @RU this Wed 11/30

When we look to history, there is much to be learned about human rights. We may find that local and global movements were born from particular events — often traumatic, and with great political, health and environmental impacts. Can the past inspire change for the future through activism and advocacy?

Please join the Roosevelt University community for the Joseph Loundy Human Rights Project’s 2022 Symposium and Luncheon on Wed 11/30 from 11am to 1pm in WB 418 at RU’s Chicago Campus and livestreamed on Zoom. Distinguished guest panelists will explore the intersection of history, health policy and environmental sustainability, and how each individually and collectively can promote human rights and social justice.

Starting at 12:10pm CST, students will also present work from three related courses in RU’s College of Arts & Sciences: Public Health Issues and Ideas, taught by professor La Vonne Downey; Service and Sustainability, led by professor Mike Bryson; and Transatlantic Perspectives: Representing History and Trauma, co-taught by professors Margaret Rung (RU) and Arnoud-Jan Bijsterveld (Tilburg University, the Netherlands).

Featured Panelists:

Mike Beard, global health director for the Better World Campaign
Diana Sierra Becerra, assistant professor of history at University of Massachusetts Amhurst
Gina Ramirez, Midwest outreach leader for the Natural Resources Defense Council

RSVP here: https://alumni-giving.roosevelt.edu/loundy-project-2022-symposium

Livestream: https://roosevelt.zoom.us/j/91613065376

Posted in conferences, courses, education, ethics, events, health, history, planning, Roosevelt, social justice, students | 1 Comment

Register Now for the Joseph Loundy 2022 Human Rights Symposium @RU: History, Health, & Sustainability (Wed 11/30)

When we look to history, there is much to be learned about human rights. We may find that local and global movements were born from particular events — often traumatic, and with great political, health and environmental impacts. Can the past inspire change for the future through activism and advocacy?

Please join the Roosevelt University community for the Joseph Loundy Human Rights Project’s 2022 Symposium and Luncheon on Wed 11/30 from 11am to 1pm in WB 418 at RU’s Chicago Campus. Distinguished guest panelists will explore the intersection of history, health policy and environmental sustainability, and how each individually and collectively can promote human rights and social justice.

Students will also present work from three related courses in RU’s College of Arts & Sciences: Public Health Issues and Ideas, taught by professor La Vonne Downey; Service and Sustainability, led by professor Mike Bryson; and Transatlantic Perspectives: Representing History and Trauma, co-taught by professors Margaret Rung (RU) and Arnoud-Jan Bijsterveld (Tilburg University, the Netherlands).

Featured Panelists:

Mike Beard, global health director for the Better World Campaign
Diana Sierra Becerra, assistant professor of history at University of Massachusetts Amhurst
Gina Ramirez, Midwest outreach leader for the Natural Resources Defense Council

RSVP here: https://alumni-giving.roosevelt.edu/loundy-project-2022-symposium

Posted in conferences, courses, education, ethics, events, health, history, planning, Roosevelt, social justice, students | 1 Comment

Sustainability in Bronzeville: Live today on WBEZ 91.5 FM (Reset)

Many conversations about Chicago’s historic Bronzeville neighborhood are focused on boosting economic development in the area. At the same time, the neighborhood has seen a growing number of initiatives for green infrastructure and sustainability. Major projects like the largest community utility microgrid in the country are underway, but grassroots efforts like food incubators and neighborhood gardens are also cropping up.

Join Reset with Sasha-Ann Simons at 11am CST on Thursday, November 17 for a special live broadcast from Bronzeville’s Omni Ecosystems. We’ll discuss how the demand for healthy public spaces is an act of resistance to inequity in the built environment. South Side environmental leaders and sustainability activists will be in the house, including RU alum and EJ warrior Gina Ramirez (MA in Soc ’14) from the Southeast Environmental Task Force and the NRDC.

A soil science laboratory and green infrastructure design firm, Omni Ecosystems builds green rooftops to reintroduce nature to urbanized areas. Reset will broadcast right next to Omni’s own green rooftop – known as the Meadow – on a historic building once home to a Bowman Dairy factory.

Reset on the Road events are FREE and open to the public. Click here to register!

Posted in alumni, cities, community, ecology, events, green design, parks and public land, policy, social justice | 1 Comment

ESC Meets Wed 11/16 at 7pm: Planning for RU’s Sustainable Future

The Environmental Sustainability Committee @RooseveltU will have its next virtual meeting of the 2022-23 academic year on Wed 11/16/22 from 7-8:30pm CST (Zoom info below). Everyone in the RU community — students, alumni, faculty, staff, admin, and trustees — is invited and encouraged to attend!

This important meeting will focus on (1) reviewing feedback from our two rounds of campus planning workshops as well as the ongoing surveys of current students and employees/alumni. In addition, we will start the process of (2) developing consensus on goals for the next five years and (3) prioritizing concrete initiatives that will achieve said goals. Please note: if you cannot make the meeting, you can still provide input via the above survey links as well as review the slides and notes from the meeting after they are posted.

The ESC is an open committee est. in 2010 that welcomes participation and encourages collaboration across colleges and departments from all members of the RU community: students, faculty, staff, administration, alumni, trustees, and friends. Our key task this fall is updating our 2015-20 Strategic Sustainability Plan with assistance by students from Prof. Mike Bryson’s SUST 350 Service & Sustainability class.

Please see the Fall 2022 Campus Sustainability Planning webpage for notes, slides, and other updates and resources related to this effort. Your input, ideas, and perspectives are needed and valued! Also note that Roosevelt’s membership in the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) provides anyone with an active RU email address full access to AASHE’s many useful online resources. Take advantage and avail yourself!

Questions? Email the ESC chair Mike Bryson (mbryson@roosevelt.edu), professor & director of Sustainability Studies, chair of the Dept of Sociology & Sustainability, College of Arts & Sciences.

Zoom Info:

Topic: ESC Meeting 2022-11-16
Time: Nov 16, 2022 07:00 PM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting
https://roosevelt.zoom.us/j/92494972769

Meeting ID: 924 9497 2769

One tap mobile
+13126266799,,92494972769# US (Chicago)
+14702509358,,92494972769# US (Atlanta)

Dial by your location
+1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
+1 470 250 9358 US (Atlanta)
+1 646 518 9805 US (New York)
+1 646 876 9923 US (New York)
+1 651 372 8299 US (Minnesota)
+1 786 635 1003 US (Miami)
+1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
+1 971 247 1195 US (Portland)
+1 213 338 8477 US (Los Angeles)
+1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
+1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
+1 602 753 0140 US (Phoenix)
+1 669 219 2599 US (San Jose)
+1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
+1 720 928 9299 US (Denver)
Meeting ID: 924 9497 2769
Find your local number: https://roosevelt.zoom.us/u/aiUwMI3YZ

Posted in alumni, ecology, education, events, faculty, planning, Roosevelt, students | 1 Comment