University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota
Sustainability Education

Student Unions Coca-Cola Grant Helps Send Six Students to AASHE

October 25, 2014MadelineGeneral, Graduate News, Undergraduate NewsComments Off

Six UMTC students will be attending the annual Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) conference in Portland, the largest conference of its kind in the world. The conference will run this Sunday through Tuesday and allow students, faculty, and other university staff from around the United States and beyond to exchange ideas and experiences on bringing sustainability to campuses, communities, and the world.

Our campus could not have been this well-represented without the help of a grant from the Coca-Cola Company through Student Unions and Activities.

Stay tuned for more stories, and keep up on Twitter for photos and updates on this enormous, diverse conference!

    Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education - Conversations on Campus Sustainability

Growing Cities Film Screening

growing cities

It’s a crisp October afternoon on campus, where fall semester is in full swing. Amidst the bustle of students walking to class, you sit at a table on Northrop mall, downtrodden. You’re thinking back to spring semester 2013, when you attended an installment of the Sustainability Education department’s annual film series. Those times were so good, learning about sustainable living and development with like-minded peers, eating popcorn donated by Wise Acre Eatery. But spring 2014 is so far away and you don’t know how you’re going to make it until then. You go in for full nostalgia and start perusing the posts on “What’s this?” you think, as you see a post titled “Growing Cities Film Screening.” Your eyes light up and you skip to class, giddy for October 24th.

That’s right, folks! The Sustainability Education department here at the University of Minnesota is proud to announce a film screening of Growing Cities, a film about urban farming in America. Preceding the film, there will be a panel discussion with representatives from Urban Ventures and Gardening Matters. These Minneapolis organizations focus on combating urban poverty and supporting urban community gardens, respectively. This topical panel discussion will take place at 7:00pm on National Food Day (Friday, October 24th) nestled in the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities campus at the Bell Museum, with the film screening following at 7:45.

This event is sponsored by the Sustainability Education department in partnership with the following UMN student groups: Students for Sustainability, U Students Like Good Food, and the College of Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resources (CFANs) Ambassadors. These students groups work year-round to promote an informed and active student body, and we’re excited to bring this event to fruition with them!

Tell your friends, tell your professors, tell the person sitting next to you on the campus connector all about it because this event is free and open to the public! The free Wise Acre Eatery popcorn will also make a return appearance while supplies last. Now stop pouting about our annual film series being so far away and get excited for Food Day 2014!

IonE Undergrad Sustainability Leaders Program

September 24, 2014Kate FlickResources, Undergraduate NewsComments Off


What’s your passion?  What’s your sustainability vision?  How can your vision be fused with others to help create a more sustainable future?

The Undergraduate Sustainability Leaders’ Program is a leadership accelerator within the Institute on the Environment at the University of Minnesota. The Leaders Program develops emerging undergraduate leaders into real world change makers committed to solutions-focused leadership.  Our goal is to grow a cohort of students who are committed to becoming the next generation of community, regional, and world leaders.  We encourage holistic thinking and respect the diverse skills and perspectives each leader brings to the table.

The ideal Institute on the Environment Leader candidate has impactful environmental and/or social leadership experience, shows a passion for environmental and social change, and has a strong academic track record.  All undergraduate majors are open to apply.

2014-2015 Focus themes: equity and reciprocity

  • How can we use lenses of equity, reciprocity, justice, and diversity to define and think about sustainability?
  • How can we bring together science, creativity, art, healing practices, and diverse ways of knowing in communication to make sustainability more interdisciplinary and inclusive?
  • How do these versions of sustainability fit into the big picture governance and policy frameworks?

 Timeline and Flow:

Starting in November, 2014, the Leaders Program will open with a day-long introduction and workshop, and continue with experiential learning through the academic year.  As a final action project this year, we will have an opportunity to shape a student component of the Association for Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) National Conference 2015 that will be hosted in Minneapolis, MN.  Let your voice be heard in this planning and sustainability’s future at one of the largest sustainability conferences in the nation.

 Cohort Learning and Action

  • Kick Off Workshop (ABSOLUTELY REQUIRED): November 8, 2014
  • Create change agent alumni piece for Sustainability Education website
  • Sustainability Symposium (Leaders present creative work): Spring 2014
  • Participate in Earth Day (April 22)
  • Present 1 of 4 Sustainability Film Series Films
  • Work towards AASHE Minneapolis 2015 Student Action Plan

Amp up your sustainability know-how by participating in

  • Once-a-month Leaders meeting/field trip (First Thursday of every month)
  • Food Day (October 24th, 2014)
  • At least 1 Frontier in the Environment Lecture Series (Wednesday @ 12)
  • Sustainability Film Series Events
  • Student Engagement Leadership Forum (SELF) Sustain (Spring 2015)
  • May Celebration at Eric Sannerud Family Farm, Sandbox (Ham Lake)


The application period for the 2014-2015 Leaders Program is now closed.  Check back early next fall if you are interesting in applying next year!

Paid Internship with WaterLegacy

September 22, 2014MadelineGeneral, Undergraduate NewsComments Off


Minnesota environmental action organization WaterLegacy is seeking a communications and outreach intern to assist with its campaign against sulfide mining near the Boundary Waters and Lake Superior.

Status: 16-20 hours/week, November 2014 – April 2015
Job Category: Communications and Outreach Intern
Compensation: $1,500, plus support for college credit
Location: Twin Cities metro area, Minnesota

Duties and Responsibilities:

Internships with WaterLegacy allow for diverse, immersive experiences in the environmental non-profit field. Interns are responsible for the completion of self-guided projects as well as assisting staff and volunteers with specific programs, events, and day-to-day office functions.

Primary Projects/Duties:

  • Assist staff with social media and web communication on environmental issues.
  • Assist staff with preparing printed or email communications such as fact sheets, flyers, announcements, solicitations and action alerts.
  • Participate in the planning, exhibiting and petitioning at events.
  • Participate in other outreach and turnout activities to support education and activism.
  • Engage with members and the public at education events or by phone.


WaterLegacy is looking for an undergraduate student living in the Twin Cities area with an interest in environmental advocacy and non-profit administration. Strong candidates are creative, self-motivated, and interested in gaining professional experience working with a small non-profit team.

Knowledge of sulfide mining issues and northeastern Minnesota’s “Arrowhead” region is preferred but not required. Access to a reliable vehicle is preferred but not required.


  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Completed first year of college or post-secondary education (GPA 3.5 or higher preferred)
  • Familiarity with major social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
  • Proficient with Microsoft Office applications
  • Recent laptop with Word and Excel (2010 or newer)
  • Experience with graphic design and/or digital layout (preferred but not required)
  • Ability to conduct self-guided research and synthesize data
  • Ability to produce and edit high-quality written content

How to Apply:

To apply, please send one PDF document to that includes:

  • Cover letter explaining why you are interested in this internship
  • Resume
  • 1-2 page writing sample
  • Contact information for 2-3 references

Deadline: Friday, October 24

Questions: Contact Jacob Crawford at


Photo credit: Eugene Kim

G&K Environmental Internship Opportunity


Image by Ron Reiring, via Flickr Creative Commons. Licensing info:

G&K Services, Inc. is a market leader in branded work apparel programs and facility services in the US. It was founded in Minnesota and employs nearly 7,500 employees. Soon, they could be employing 7,5001!

G&K is hiring an environmental intern to start immediately and work 10-15 hours per week. The job would mostly consist of working on environmental projects and recommending company improvements to the Environmental Compliance Engineer. Interested parties should apply if they have a GPA of 3.0 or higher and have successfully completed their sophomore year at the U (or another accredited college). G&K will show preference to applicants who are working towards a bachelor’s degree in environmental science, environmental management/policy or engineering, industrial engineering, or a related field.

If you would like an application or have any questions regarding the internship, please contact Jacqueline Martin (G&K HR dept.) at or Ben Puhl (G&K Environmental Systems Engineer) at

The Sustainability Education website is administered by the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment.

The University of Minnesota offers sustainability courses in most of its colleges and campuses around the state. These courses encompass biophysical sciences, social sciences, humanities, arts, design, engineering, business, and health. The Sustainability Studies minor is one of several interdisciplinary programs through which such diverse courses come together.