Saturday, October 19, 2013

November 2013 Sustainability Profile: Marina Gonzalez Flores

Each month, our newsletter features a person or group on campus that is working toward a more sustainable world. This month features Marina Gonzalez Flores, a student leader in the social justice movement on campus.

We asked Marina what she thinks about sustainability and how it relates to her work at UCSC.

Name: Marina Gonzalez Flores

Title: I am the Chancellor's Undergraduate Intern for the College Ten CoCurricular Office and my title is the Social Justice and Community Programs Coordinator.  I put on events surrounding Social Justice and Community Issues and practical ways for involvement.

Year in school and major: Third year; Politics and Latin American and Latino Studies Major

Favorite Green Tips: At our office we make it one of our goals to reuse as much as possible. With big annual events we make laminated posters and signs that can be reused each year to discourage paper and poster wasting. We save everything and reuse as much as we can.

What does "sustainability" mean to you? For me, sustainability means the ability to continue living a certain way. For an industry to be sustainable it needs to use its resources knowing they will grow back or continue on with or without human intervention. For people to be sustainable we need to live in a way that we encourage our planet to keep evolving and producing without hurting it. 

How does sustainability relate to your role at UCSC? What's one cool thing you've done to make UCSC a more sustainable place? With my role at UCSC I try to bring awareness on social justice and community issues, which ends up being tied with a lot of sustainability issues. The two credit courses I facilitate have a section, which cover environmental racism, and how impoverished communities of color, suffer the consequences of man made pollution. This year, I am trying to coordinate events that create dialogue between agroindustry and agroecology as well as how agroecology is more sustainable for farmers in Latin America and elsewhere.

How do you practice sustainability in your own life? Recycle, ride my bike, buy farm friendly produce, and compost as much as possible. Being sustainable in my personal life is a challenge but as I keep learning each year, it gets easier.

Have you had a favorite sustainability moment at UCSC? Last year I was able to go to the Earth Summit and I was surprised the event was zero waste. It became my goal to make other events such as the Practical Activism Conference become more environmentally friendly. It really inspired me to make my programs more sustainable.

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