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Friday, January 30, 2015

Announcement: 2014-2015 Carbon Fund Projects!

Congratulations to the projects that have received funding for the year of 2014-2015! We've funded over $150,000 in projects this year! The process began in November with the abstract applications, in which each of the following 7 projects were funded up to $5000.

Increasing Compost Education
Sustainable Commercial Export Packaging For Zero Motorcycles
Walk to Class Challenge Day: Year 2
Santa Cruz High Garden Renaissance
Development of a Versatile Microbial Fuel Cell
Green Field Trips to the Santa Cruz Wharf
Digging Deeper in the Harbor High Grow Quad

For projects requesting over $5000, the second phase of the application process happened in January. Applicants submitted macro-grant applications, and the following 11 projects received further funding.  

Pathway Lighting Retrofit
Water and Energy Efficient Steamers in Campus Dining Halls
Fleet Services Electric Vehicle Upgrade Project
The UCSC Bike Library
Green Labs Equipment Fund
Cowell/Stevenson Dining Hall: Water and Energy-Efficient Dish Machine Replacement
Reducing GHG Emissions by Greatly Reducing 2-Stroke Leaf Blowers on Campus
Microscopy Facility LED Light Source Upgrade
Arboretum Bioponics
Ecotopia House

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Zero Waste Team Schedules Styrofoam Collection Day

The Sustainability Office's Zero Waste Team has scheduled the quarterly Styrofoam Collection day. The event will take place at the Physical & Biological Sciences Loading Dock on February 4th from 11am-2pm. Come by and drop off any unwanted styrofoam materials. Grounds Services is also offering labs mattress bags to collect their Styrofoam in and leave out at the loading dock for pickup anytime of the quarter, rather than always having to wait until the quarterly collection day.

See you there! For more information email Chris Kane (Zero Waste Team Programs Coordinator) at chkane [at] ucsc [dot] edu.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

UC creates President's Sustainability Student Fellowship Program

On January 14th, The University of California announced the creation of the President's Sustainability Student Fellowship/Internship Program to support UC's goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2025. The UC Office of the President (UCOP) will provide $7,500 to each of the UC's 10 campuses. At each campus, one award will be designated to support student engagement and communications for the Carbon Neutrality Initiative and the President's Global Climate Leadership Council. For more information, read the complete article here.

Monday, January 26, 2015

LEED Green Building Training

The UCSC Sustainability Office will again be hosting LEED green building training to prepare students, staff and faculty for taking the Green Associate (GA) and/or the Accredited Professional (AP) exams.

Below are some details:
  • A LEED professional credential signifies that you are a leader in the green building field and an active participant in the green building movement. 
  • Draft course agenda may be viewed by clicking here. 
  • You must pass the LEED GA exam before you can sit for the LEED AP exam, however you can sit for both exams at the same time. 
  • Exams can be taken anytime. 
  • The courses include supplementary study materials, online community support and practice exams to help you prepare. 
  • The Sustainability Office will help to organize study groups after the courses. 
  • Courses are free and lunch will be provided. 
Note: If there is limited interest for the AP course, the S.O. may choose to postpone it and just do the GA course. Courses are only open to UCSC staff, faculty and students. Before we schedule the training, we need your input. If you would like to attend these trainings, please fill out the survey below by 5PM on Friday, January 30. This will help us gauge interest in each exam and figure out the best date and time (based on the instructor's availability).

Please fill out the brief survey below:
Email Chrissy Thomure cthomure [at] ucsc [dot] edu with any questions.

Earth Summit Forums

Ever wanted to have a say in how UCSC is approaching sustainability? Here's your chance! The Blueprint for a Sustainable Campus is a student-run living document created by the Student Environmental Center. Every year students, faculty, staff and community members come together to share their visions for the future of sustainable growth at UC Santa Cruz. The Blueprint is meant to serve as a resource and guide for the campus community. The SEC hopes that it will encourage more students to become an active member in their community and take part in sustainability work.

The Earth Summit Forums, formerly known as Blueprint Breakouts, are coming up fast! Attend any of the remaining forums to voice your opinions about how UCSC can further sustainability:

January 14th - Social & Environmental Justice 

 January 21st - Energy & Water 

January 28th - Food Systems 

February 4th - Waste Prevention & Green Purchasing 

February 18th - Transportation 

February 25th - Land, Habitat, and Watershed 

March 4th - Academics and Curriculum

Art and Science Majors Collaborate to Save Joshua Tree

Joshua trees once flourished all over Southwestern America but now the tree is only found in California's Joshua Tree National Park and small areas of Utah, Nevada and Arizona.  As deserts become hotter and drier, seed-spreading is dependent on rats which can't spread it fast enough to keep up with climate change.

A dying Joshua tree at Joshua Tree National Park. Photo by Richard Lui, The Desert Sun

The Santa Cruz Sentinel reported an exciting collaboration between digital art, environmental studies, science and engineering students to address these pressing issues:

To save the Joshua tree, a desert plant in peril, UC Santa Cruz art research associate Geoffrey Thomas imagines a future with seed-spreading tarantula robots and genetically-engineered giant sloths. 

These whimsical ideas, the subject of three digital art images, have a ring of truth, said Thomas, who collaborated with Juniper Harrower, a UCSC environmental studies graduate student studying the tree. The duo is planning to create an educational mobile app and short animations from the sketches within the next year.

UCSC students in Geoffrey Thomas's digital art class inspect Joshua tree seedlings at a campus greenhouse in October.

Art and technology have powerful influences on impacting change because they are big parts of any culture around the world.  Incorporating digital art, mobile apps and environmental education is a great way to foster a culture for change and further the sustainability of our ecosystems.

Read the original article here.

Sustainability Office's Zero Waste Team is Coordinating the First Annual Campus Clean-Up Day!

The Student Union Assembly and the Sustainability Office's Zero Waste Team have teamed up to coordinate the First Annual Campus Clean-Up Day on April 25th! The vision for this event is to bring students and campus users together to clean up our beautiful campus and shed light on littering issues and improper cigarette butt disposal. They hope to create an event that motivates campus users to properly dispose of waste and encourages campus stewardship. Stay tuned for more information about this incredible event!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

February 2015: Classes, Training, and Community

Future Campus Housing Plans: February 10 and 11
Plans are underway to expand student housing at UCSC with a focus on the west campus. Although these plans won’t be realized for several years, your experiences as a UCSC student, the reasons behind your current housing selections, and anything else you’d like to suggest that would enhance student satisfaction regarding housing are extremely important. This housing development will have possible effects to Family Student Housing, the Porter Meadow, and the Trailer Park.  It would be a great place to express the need of sustainability within new housing and planning. All are encouraged to attend. Please contact jimgrove [at] ucsc [dot] edu to participate. Click here for more information about upcoming stakeholder engagement sessions to provide your input.

March for Real Climate Leadership: February 7
On February 7th, thousands of people from all corners of the state will take to the streets of Oakland to call on Governor Jerry Brown to protect all Californians from dangerous oil activities that harm our water, our health and our communities. As he took office on January 5th for his fourth and final term, Governor Brown declared he wants California to be an international leader in the fight against climate change. But California can’t be a leader in the fight against climate change while we unabashedly push extreme extraction methods like fracking that worsen climate change and seriously endanger the health of our communities. Details about the march here. Sign up for the bus from Santa Cruz here.

Winter Food System Learning Journeys
Join OPERS on the journey through our local food system here in Santa Cruz. Food Systems Learning Journeys will take you from the classroom and the halls of campus into a not too distant world of farming, distributing, cooking, consuming, and composting food! You will have the opportunity to taste, touch, listen, and look into a world that we are all connected to. FSLJs that are offered this quarter are listed below Viticulture and Regional Terroir (Thursday, 2/12/15); Fruit Tree Pruning (Friday, 2/20/15); The Pie's the Limit (Wednesday, 2/25/15); and The Craft of Fermentation (Saturday 2/28/15). Registration and more information here.

El Intercambio: February 17, 19 and 20
Join FoCAN and youth from Central America at the Intercambio event. On February 17th from 5-8 P.M., there will be a gathering with free food about the Scales of Labor in the Food System at the College Eight Red Room. On February 19 from 2-4:30 P.M., there will be a panel about the International Youth Network for Food Sovereignty at the UCSC Kresge Town Hall. The last event will be on February 20 from 9-11 A.M at New Leaf (located at 1101 Fair Ave.) for an AgroEco Coffee Tasting.

Education for Sustainable Living Program Spring Classes
Are you interested in social justice, food systems, renewable energy or any other Blueprint for a Sustainable Campus topics? Take the ESLP class for 2 or 5 units next quarter! Designed and led by undergraduate students. Go to to learn more about class offerings and how to enroll.

LEED Green Building Accreditation Training
The UCSC Sustainability Office will again be hosting LEED green building training to prepare students, staff and faculty for taking the Green Associate (GA) and/or the Accredited Professional (AP) exams. These classes are free with a provided lunch! Draft course agenda can be viewed here. If you are interested, please email Chrissy at cthomure [at] ucsc [dot] edu.

Where the Health Can You Eat Around Here: February 25
Meet our Chefs at the Healthy Monday Tasting Event. Free to everyone, you do not need to have a meal plan! Wednesday, February 25th, 2015 3:30pm-5:00pm @ Terra Fresca Restaurant above the College 9 &10 Dining Hall. Sample selections from our new Healthy Monday's dining hall menu! Find out about healthy alternatives in our cafes. The Health Center, SHOP, OPERS Cruz Fit, along with several other campus departments are going to be on site to talk about healthy lifestyle resources available right here on campus for Slugs. Campus chefs are anxious to get your feedback too on new dishes and hear ideas for future cafe and dining hall menus! Door Prizes and Freebies too!

3rd Annual Zero Waste Youth Convergence Deadline for Speakers: February 15
The UC Berkeley Zero Waste Research Center is pleased to announce it will be hosting Zero Waste Youth USA's 3rd Annual Zero Waste Youth Convergence at UC Berkeley on Sunday, March 15, 2015. The Convergence is the kick-off event for the annual Bay Area Zero Waste Week. The call for speakers/presenters is now open. If you are interested in presenting, please apply here. The deadline to apply is February 15, 2015. Questions should be directed to info [at] zerowasteyouthusa [dot] org

Launch of new PICA website
Please take a few moments to check out PICA's new features, including a calendar of upcoming events, a food justice focus and a link where you can make a donation directly to PICA. 

Winter PICA Workdays
Come out and get your hands dirty at the PICA Garden Workdays! Every Saturday, January 17 to March 7 from 10 A.M. - 2 P.M a free garden grown lunch will be served. For more information contact Ariel Wexler: awexler [at] ucsc [dot] edu

PICA Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop: February 20
Have you ever wanted to learn fruit tree pruning? PICA is offering an opportunity to do so on Friday, February 20th with Orin Martin from 1 - 4P.M. PICA will be leaving the OPERS Recreational Porch at 1pm. RSVP here -- spots are limited! If you experience any problems signing up or have any questions, please email kemjones [at] ucsc [dot] edu

A new program launching in Fall 2015 will immerse students from across the UC system in the outdoor classrooms of the UC Natural Reserve System. The NRS Field Quarter Program will give students opportunities to closely observe California habitats, practice hands-on field research, and gain a deeper understanding of the natural world. California Ecology and Conservation will be the only course students enroll in for the term, and it yields a full complement of quarter units. As they visit up to six of the 39 reserves in the NRS, students will master standard field techniques and get to know a broad range of California habitats, climate regimes, and species. The deadline is February 2, 2015 and instruction begins in the fall. Visit the website for more information.

The 16th Annual Agroecology Shortcourse will explore the roots of agroecology as a global movement as well as a science and a practice from July 12-25, 2015. Santa Cruz offers the ideal context to examine historical and current issues of social and environmental equity and sustainability that agroecology movements confront all over the world. The course aims to introduce agroecology and strategically connect the diverse and powerful agroecology experiences and movements active worldwide and create a collective overarching view of the current global situation. The course will end with a vision of how to better facilitate cross-fertilization across agroecology movements and overcome obstacles to convergence. For more information, contact can.shortcourse [at] gmail [dot] com or visit the website.

Maui Wowi: Food Systems, Agriculture, and Outdoor Adventure Spring Break Trip
Though this is fall quarter, registration is open (and will fill) for the annual experiential learning and food system engagement spring break trip. Join the Food Systems Working Group & Rec Department on Maui to explore traditional food and farming sites, explore different aspects of culture, and adventure into bamboo forests, ranch lands, and marine sanctuaries to explore the ecological aspects of the island. This trip will also include a 2-unit Environmental Studies internship in winter quarter to prepare the group for different concepts and frameworks of food system engagement they will explore in March. Sign up on the OPERS Recreation website this quarter to reserve your spot!

Innovative Approaches to Sustainability at Other Campuses

Here are a few selections of the innovative approaches to sustainability taking place on other college campuses. Each of these examples was chosen because they represent ideas that UCSC could potentially implement in some form, or in some cases, already has begun to. If you see something here that you want to make a reality at UCSC, contact the Sustainability Office susted[at]ucsc[dot]edu and we will help you direct your ideas toward fruition! 

U Colorado Boulder Salvages Computers for Low Income Communities 
The University's Computers for Youth program, now ongoing and year-round, provides middle and high school students from low-income communities around Colorado with upgraded computers and basic computing programs. Surplus computer equipment is gathered, tested and re-furbished to original specifications and loaded with the latest software to assist students' academic achievement.

Sustainability is where environmental, social, and environmental needs are balanced for current and future access to the things needed for all to live prosperous lives. Salvaging old computers is sustainable and more socially just because most of those computers would go to e-waste dumps across the globe, which cause disease and high death rates to nearby communities.

A good example of this is this video:

Here at UCSC we have E-waste collection sites located in every college mailroom. The multibins are blue cabinets built to collect batteries, small electronics, printer cartridges, and CDs.

U Winnipeg Offers Healthy Vending Options 
The 23 new campus vending machines offer gluten-free and low sodium products, fair trade coffee, granola bars, fruit cups, trail mix, and hummus and crackers. The machines also display nutritional information, promotion of events, and are outfitted with LED lighting and motion sensors.

Northwestern U Finds New Life for Waste Cooking Oil 
The university received its first batch of biodiesel fuel, 300 gallons that is expected to last about 3 weeks, from dining hall cooking oil waste processed into fuel for shuttle buses.

U South Carolina to Begin Greek Life Sustainability Program 
A fourth-year international business student is spearheading an effort to educate the Greek community about sustainability and hopes integrate more environmentally friendly practices into every day life through the creation of an official Panhellenic Sustainability Committee.

February 2015 Green Tip: Recycling E-waste

We went to the experts to find out the best way to recycle e-waste materials. All of the following information is from the Environmental Health & Safety UCSC webpage here. Much of e-waste is disposed of incorrectly, which is very devastating for the communities living around landfills, so it is very important that everyone on campus contributes in disposing of e-waste properly.

Electronic waste (E-waste): what is it and how do we get rid of it?

This term applies to consumer and business electronic equipment that is near or at the end of its useful life. There is no clear definition for electronic waste (e-waste) at this time, but if you can plug it in to an electrical outlet or it contains circuit boards or chips, it is most likely e-waste. These products can contain heavy metals like cadmium, lead, copper, and chromium that can contaminate the environment. DO NOT dispose of these items in the trash or your recycling bins.

Examples of electronic waste include, but are not limited to:

  • TVs, computer monitors, printers, scanners, keyboards, mice, cables, circuit boards, lamps, clocks, flashlight, calculators, phones, answering machines, digital/video cameras, radios, VCRs, DVD players, MP3 and CD players 
  •  Kitchen equipment (toasters, coffee makers, microwave ovens)
  •  Laboratory equipment** (hot plates, microscopes, calorimeters) 
  •  Broken computer monitors, television tubes (CRTs) 

 **Any laboratory equipment that has the possibility of being contaminated with chemical, biological, or radioactive substances must be cleared through EH&S and Departmental Facilities Office before disposal.
 **For PBSci laboratory equipment disposal procedure click here.

Student E-waste Recycling Options 

If you live on-campus you can dispose of your electronic waste easily and conveniently by creating a Fix It Ticket or contacting your college maintenance office.

If you live off-campus, learn more about the Santa Cruz County electronic waste disposal program:

Additional information on disposal / recycling of e-waste and other regulated items can be found in all college mailrooms, Graduate Student Housing Mailroom and the Village Laundry Community room. Multibins are blue cabinets built to collect batteries, small electronics, printer cartridges, and CDs. They are located in every college mailroom.

UC Santa Cruz Leads Climate Change Research Efforts

Researchers at UCSC have developed an innovative plan to incorporate the UC Natural Reserve System in the detection and forecast of California's climate change impact. The proposal to establish a UC-wide Institute for the Study of Ecological and Evolutionary Climate Impacts (ISEECI) received $1.9 million in funding. UCSC Biologist, Barry Sinervo will lead the institute which incorporates all 9 UC undergraduate campuses. For more information, read the full article here.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Join FoCAN to "Restore Our Roots and Reclaim Our Labor"

The Friends of the Community Agroecology Network (FoCAN) is hosting a cornucopia of events during the month of February! Kicking off on Tuesday February 17th from 5-8pm in the College 8 Red Room, they will be discussing the Scales of Labor in the Food System and there will be free food. Then, on Thursday February 19th from 2-4:40pm there will be a Panel for International Youth network for Food Sovereignty in the UCSC Kresge Town hall. Finally, Friday February 20th from 9-11am there will be an AgroEco Coffee Tasting at New Leaf Market (1101 Fair Ave. West Side, Santa Cruz). Come on out and support FoCAN and learn about food and labor rights!

February 2015: Contests & Funding

Campus Sustainability Council (CSC): Deadline Feb 13
The Campus Sustainability Council (CSC) would like to fund your student organization’s sustainability projects or events in the upcoming year. Proposals adhering to the criteria for student organizations and relevance to the Blueprint for a Sustainable Campus are eligible for funding.This funding is only applicable to those who have already done the grant training during week 3 of winter 2015.  Applications are due by February 13th. If you have any questions contact CSC at csc[at]lists[dot]ucsc[dot]edu.

Call for Submissions: INSS 2015 Conference: Deadline February 15
The Integrated Network for Social Sustainability is now accepting abstracts for its 2015 conference themed Social Sustainability and Infrastructure. Academic papers and non-traditional written media can be submitted that examine one of the two areas: defining social, political or ethical issues that emerge in the pursuit of sustainability, or encountering social, political or ethical approaches to addressing broad issues of sustainability. 500-1,000 word abstracts are due by February 15.


Call for papers: Water in the World: Deadline March 1
The conference on November 6-7th at Winthrop University, South Carolina focuses on the uses, politics, art, history, and economics of water worldwide. It is open to faculty, graduate students, undergraduate students, activists, and community professionals.

Examples of possible topics include but are not limited to:
* The privatization of water
* Climate change
* Development goals and their water implications
* Water security and insecurity
* The politics and economics of water reuse
* Capacity building
* Food, water, and the environment
* Art and design contributions to water management
* Financing and investment schemes
* Historical droughts and floods
* Climate justice, ethical, cultural and religious values
* The role of water in post-conflict peace building
* The impact of water policy on the poor
* Creative solutions to water challenges
* Water in creative practice
* Media coverage of water issues
* Perceptions of risk and water quality issues

Papers will be reviewed for connections to the theme and an interdisciplinary approach to the subject. For more information on the Winthrop University Water Conference, conference updates, and deadlines visit the website:

Graduate Scholarships in Environmental & Climate Policy for Students from East Asia: Deadline March 15

The Bard Center for Environmental Policy is pleased to announce that Henry Luce Foundation Scholarships are available for students from East Asia (China, Japan or South Korea) to complete a two-year Master of Science degree in Environmental Policy or Climate Science and Policy starting August 2015. The LIASE Scholarships (Luce Initiative for Asian Studies and the Environment) provide tuition waivers of between 50% and 100% in the first year, and at least 50% of tuition in the second year. Students are responsible for travel costs, and for expenses for room and board. LIASE Scholarship students in the CEP program will participate in an annual conference featuring undergraduate and graduate research on Asia and the Environment with students from across the northeastern United States. Bard will award two-year LIASE Scholarships to qualified applicants each year for the next two years. LIASE Scholarship applicants must be citizens of one of China, Japan or South Korea, and must have a demonstrated interest in environmental policy in their region. Applicants for the LIASE Scholarship should, in addition to a regular application, provide a one-page letter discussing their research interests in Asian environmental policy. The LIASE Scholarship application letter should be emailed to Caitlin O'Donnell (codonnel[at]bard[dot]edu) by March 15, 2015 with the subject "LIASE Scholarship Application" to be considered.

Biomimicry Global Design Challenge: Deadline August 3
The Biomimicry Institute and the Ray C. Anderson Foundation announced the opening of the Biomimicry Global Design Challenge. Students are invited to submit commercially viable, nature-inspired solutions to global food system challenges. All participants get access to the Design Challenge Toolbox and supporting resources, including sessions with mentors and biomimicry professionals. The grand prize, to be awarded in 2016, is $100,000. The deadline for submissions is August 3rd.

International Film Festival: Deadline May 4
The International Film Festival for Environment, Health and Culture is accepting submissions for films pertaining to environment, health and culture issues. There are five submission categories: international feature film, international short film, documentary feature, documentary short and newcomer. The film festival will be held on May 27.

What We Did: Inter-Org 2015

On January 9th-11th, the Campus Sustainability Office planned and hosted their 5th annual weekend retreat for a variety of organizations. The beauty of the Inter-Organizational retreat is that attendees' primary focus does not have to be sustainability. Groups with a variety of interests and foci were in attendance. The unique point of view that every organization brought made for a far richer experience. The first night, Friday, took place on campus, while the remainder of the retreat took place in Boulder Creek, California at the YMCA Camp Campbell.

Friday night began in the Stevenson Event Center with a delicious dinner prepared by volunteers, and the Inter-Org Foods subcommittee. The planning team would like to thank PICA for letting them use their kitchen and supplies to cook the meal on Friday evening. The meal consisted of delicious, spicy vegan chili and tortilla chips. Dessert was a delicious gluten-free, dairy-free brownie. There was assigned seating so that attendees were forced out of their comfort zone by being required to meet new people and mix and mingle with other organizations and individuals. Thanks to Lily Urmann and Chris Kane, two UCSC student leaders, we were all able to silk screen our white t-shirts after dinner, with the weekend's motto: "Communi[ty]cation!"

Next, we were introduced to the Recreation Department's Experiential Leadership Program. It consisted of an awesome group of student leaders who taught us activities that allowed us to practice the skills necessary to working well in a group. One activity that stood out as particularly fun was the blind-fold maze. We were placed in groups of two, and one member wore a blindfold. The other member of the pair had to guide the blindfolded individual across the maze through their directions- no physical guidance was allowed! If you stepped on the cones, you were frozen! Communication and trust were absolutely integral to playing this game; just as communication and trust are an integral part of working together in an office and organization!

Friday night ended with fun skits! Each of the team building groups were given about 15 minutes to create their own original cheer, chant, rap or story that was representative of their evening at the Inter-Org kick off dinner. Shortly after, most went home to pack and get their camping gear in order for our early morning the following Saturday.

Saturday morning kicked off with a great seminar by Generation Waking Up, led by Mira Michelle of PICA, Tawn Kennedy of Green Ways to School/People Power/Sierra Club, and Maiya Evans of UCSF. Generation Waking Up is an open source curriculum that works to ignite the passion in young people to bring forth a more sustainable world.

After Generation Waking Up, attendees were treated to a variety of workshops presented by our fellow student organizations. Some workshops topics included Cultural Resilience, Biomimicry, and Compassion. The workshops left everyone feeling energized and full of new knowledge and understanding. After the student-led workshops, everyone shared a delicious dinner together and then gathered at the campfire for the annual talent show! It is amazing how much talent each and everyone individual who attended possesses!

The following morning, the retreat wound down with a delicious breakfast and break out sessions for individual organizations to gather and discuss ways to incorporate their newfound knowledge and inspiration into future projects. Inter-Org ended with a group circle where everyone shared a word that personally summed up their experience at the retreat.

Thanks to Lauren Korth for the photographs, and to everyone who made this retreat possible! If you are interested in getting involved in planning next year's retreat, please email Melina at mmeserol[at]ucsc[dot]edu.

February 2015: Internships, Employment & Volunteering


Chancellor's Undergraduate Internship Program: Deadline February 12
CUIP provides on-campus internships in programs and departments throughout the campus, oftentimes working with sustainability organizations and the Sustainability Office. Interns work with a mentor and take a leading role in a project. A 2-unit leadership seminar class is required year-long. A scholarship of 8,200 dollars is paid towards the intern’s registration fees for the academic year.

The Food Systems Working Group has an exciting new cadre of student leaders working across their partnerships with Dining, the Farm, and Garden efforts. Are you looking for an internship to join them? Email ucscfswg [at] gmail [dot] com if you'd like to find out more!

Friends of Community Agroecology Network (FoCAN) is looking for additional interns for winter quarter to work with their Intercambio (Exchange) program. Internships skills you would gain consist of event planning, collaborating with sponsors, and working with a team. For additional information contact FoCAN [at] ucsc [dot] edu. Learn more about Intercambio in this blog post by Adriana Murguia.

Writers & Social Media Interns Wanted for Hilltromper
Hilltromper, the one-stop outdoor recreation web resource for Santa Cruz County, is looking for an intern to help run the calendar, write about recreation and the environment and contribute to social media. Tromping strongly encouraged! If interested, please email Traci [at] hilltromper [dot] com.

Green Drinks Needs Coordination Help
Green Drinks is an informal networking event where environmentally-minded people meet over drunks. Green Drinks are seeking coordination support and aims to better serve the Santa Cruz community. Contact hannahjoyhodgson [at] gmail [dot] if you are interested. Also- attend the February Green Drinks meeting Monday, February 2nd from 5-7:30 pm at Vino Prima on the Wharf. For more information, visit the Green Drinks website.

Second Nature Seeking Interns for Spring 2015
Second Nature is a Boston-based non-profit organization with a mission to proactively build a sustainable and positive global future through leadership in higher education. They are seeking applicants for internships that may focus on multiple tasks based on applicant's area of interest. Students at all post-secondary institutions are invited to apply. Please fill out the form online, here.

Santa Cruz Sierra Club Seeking Interns & Volunteers
The mission of the Sierra Club is to explore, enjoy, and protect natural places. It is one of the oldest and largest environmental organization in the country, founded by John Muir in the late 1800s. If you are interested in learning how environmental activism works at the local level, planning fun events and hikes to engage people with our local environment, and more please email [at] sierraclub [dot] org. Visit the websiteFacebook, and MeetUp page for more information.

Coastal Watershed Council Internships Available
The Coastal Watershed Council (CWC) has many great internship opportunities to learn about local watersheds, build your resume, and contribute to cleaner, healthier watersheds in Santa Cruz. They're looking for motivated college and high school students. For more information, call (831) 464-9200 and view a full list of internship opportunities here.

The Offset Project, located in Monterey, California, works to implement sound waste policies and environmental stewardship, is seeking a Sustainability Program Intern. The intern would start immediately and must commit to a minimum of 6 months and 5-10 hours per work for credit (unpaid). If you are interested, please e-mail a resume and cover letter to Kristin: kristin [at] the offsetproject [dot] org

CSSC Field Organizer Program Internships Available
The California Student Sustainability Coalition (CSSC) Field Organizer Program is a series of paid, unpaid volunteer, and unpaid course credit positions that allow students and recent alumni to get real, on-the-ground organizing experience in the climate justice movement. For more information and to apply, visit the website.
myActions on Campus has recognized UC Santa Cruz's commitment to develop next generation leaders and is inviting our students to for two paid internships! Last year 75 campuses across the nation participated, driving over 100,000 sustainable projects and actions in a plethora of communities. These internship roles include Sustainability Campus Intern and Community Service Campus Intern. Don't wait, create change now. For more information visit myActions on Campus page.

Summer Naturalist Internship in Aspen, Colorado
Love nature and leadership? Apply for an internship in Aspen, Colorado to lead nature walks, assist with management of the Hallam Lake visitor center, learn about Rocky Mountain ecology, educate the public. Employment is from June 8-September 7, 2015. For more information and to apply, click here.

University of California Office of the President Internship Program
On January 14th, The University of California announced the creation of the President's Sustainability Student Fellowship/Internship Program to support UC's goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2025. The UC Office of the President (UCOP) will provide $7,500 to each of the UC's 10 campuses. At each campus, one award will be designated to support student engagement and communications for the Carbon Neutrality Initiative and the President's Global Climate Leadership Council. For more information, read the complete article here.


FSWG is looking for a Sustainable Food Research and Engagement Assistant. This individual would make a lasting change on campus through voicing the opinion of the people about what food is available in the dining halls. Apply today through the Career Center Employee Request (ER #7650). 

Mount St. Mary's is seeking a Sustainability Coordinator to provide leadership and work in conjunction with the Sustainability Committee for all their efforts and practices on campus. Please apply online and include a cover letter, resume and three professional references. For more information, visit the application information here.

Second Nature Education for Sustainability Recruitment Coordinator 
Second Nature is a Boston-based non-profit organization with a mission to proactively build a sustainable and positive global future through leadership in higher education. They are seeking the services of a Recruitment Coordinator to increase the participation of institutions in its programs and activities. Position can be remote or based in the Boston office. For more information and to apply for this position: click here.

Society for Advancement of Hispanics/Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) is looking for a Communications & Marketing coordinator  to increase recognition, membership, engagement and fundraising efforts. The position remains open until filled. For more information about the position, click here. For general information about SACNAS, click here

CCOF Seeking Programs Assistant, Office & Sales Assistant, and Development Manager
California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) is an organic certifier, trade association and educational foundation supporting the growth of organic food and agriculture. They are currently hiring three positions. For more information and to apply, visit the website

Solar Leadership Program Applications Open Soon
SunEdison launched the Solar Leadership Program (SLP) to develop management talent for the company and prepare associates for future leadership roles at SunEdison.  Expected start date in Summer 2015. For more information please email SLPrecruiting [at] sunedison [dot] com. Learn more here.
The Safe Routes to School National Partnership is seeking a new Executive Director to provide leadership, vision and direction to fulfill the mission of the National Partnership! See the position description for full details on the role, responsibilities and what an ideal candidate for this position might look like. Prospective candidates can also contact Janet Albert in confidence at janet.albert [at] bridgepartnersllc [dot] com.

Project Bike Trip is a non-profit organization that offers technical training in bicycle mechanics, preparing youth for job opportunities within the bicycle industry. This is an excellent opportunity to practice sustainability by engaging in a program that offers fun environmentally friendly means of alternative transportation. In order to manage the growing demand for the Bike Tech Program, they are looking for two professional, self-motivated, organize, innovative individuals to join their team. For complete job descriptions and information on how to apply, click here.


The Student Union Assembly and the Sustainability Office's Zero Waste Team are teaming up to coordinate the First Annual Campus Clean-Up Day on April 25th! They hope to create an event that motivates campus users to properly dispose of waste and encourages campus stewardship. Stay tuned for more information about this incredible event and information on how to get involved!

Help Plan the Sustainability Office's Film Festival to Celebrate Campus' 50th Anniversary 
Do you have a love for organization and planning? Interested in sustainability and have a passion for cinema? Then this is the opportunity for you! Join the Sustainability Office in planning a Sustainability themed Film Festival in celebration of UCSC's 50th Anniversary! To partake or for more information, email Meghan Neureither at mneureit [at] ucsc [dot] edu.

Join Central Zone Waste Reduction Team for Conservation Carnival 
The Central Zone Waste Reduction team is planning an on-campus event with games, crafts, music and prizes all focused around water conservation and sustainable living practices and are searching for volunteers to help with the event. The event will take place on Saturday, April 18th time TBA. If you are interested stay tuned for more information or contact Madeline Halluin at mhalluin [at] ucsc [dot] edu.

College 8 Earth Week Facilitation Opportunity
Interested in facilitating an event? We are looking to collaborate with various organizations for Earth Week 2015 (the week of Earth Day). This year's theme is "Your Plate: The effect your food choices have on you and the world around you". Questions? Contact Derek Dean at drdean [at] ucsc [dot] edu.

Global Student Embassy Seeking Garden Leader
Global Student Embassy (GSE) Santa Cruz initiates and runs several high school garden projects here in Santa Cruz county. Would you or someone you know be interested in engaging in GSE projects as a core team member? A ccommitment would involve some combination of meeting one to two times/month, planning for community workdays, leading after school workdays, and facilitating discussion-based workshops. Contact Wyeth Wunderlich at wyeth [at] globalstudent embassy [dot] org to participate in this awesome program.

Winter Water Event Coordination
Winter Water is a water organization collaborative event with the ultimate goal of educating students about various water issues, including access, privatization, drought, and how to get involved. Coordinated by Take Back the Tap and other on-campus student organizations, the event will feature numerous tables of information about water-related organizations on and off-campus, as well as two keynote speakers that are experts on specific water issues. The event will be on Monday, February 23 at Monday Kresge Town Hall from 1-5 p.m. If you are an organization that wants to get involved in planning, tabling, or promoting the event, email David at dmrosas[at]ucsc[dot]edu. Come learn about how you can make a difference and support the most fundamental aspect of life, water!

The UC Global Food Initiative aims to address global issues in the food system. All 10 UCs are working collectively towards this effort to support sustainable agriculture, healthy eating, and food security. UCSC is playing a critical role in this effort with the support of the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems. Join a subcommittee and get involved by contacting ucscfswg [at] ucsc [dot] edu.

Become a Student Blogger for CSSC
Interested in sharing your campus' work with a broad statewide coalition? CSSC is currently seeking new student bloggers! Email info [at] sustainabilitycoalition [dot] org for more details. Learn more about CSSC on the blog here.

Community Engagement with San Lorenzo River Alliance
Help the San Lorenzo River Alliance have more positive attention on and more positive engagement with the San Lorenzo River by signing up to be a community engagement volunteer. To learn more or volunteer, email Laurie Egan at legan [at] coastal-watershed [dot] org. Learn more here.

Teach K-12 Watershed Conservation Lessons
Council Watershed Council presents lessons to K-12 grade students at public schools throughout the county. Volunteer to present lessons on the link between watersheds and our water supply, recycling and composting, water pollution prevention, how to pack a trash free lunch, wise energy use, and many other topics related to climate change and wise resource use. To learn more and sign up, email Stew Jenkins at sjenkins [at] coastal-watershed [dot] org or call him at (831) 464-9200. Learn more here.

Carneros Creek Winter Monitoring
Want to gain field experience in beautiful wetland areas? Volunteer with the Carneros Creek Water Quality Monitoring Program to help monitor seasonal Carneros Creek, a primary freshwater tributary to Elkhorn Slough. You'll be professionally trained to test for field measurements and flow, including how to collect water samples that will be analyzed at a certified lab for bacteria, nutrients, total suspended solids, and pesticides. Contact Debie Chirco-Macdonald at djchirco [at] coastal-watershed [dot] org or (831) 464-9200 to get involved. Learn more here.

Volunteers Sought for March for Climate Leadership: February 7
On February 7, thousands of Californians are gathering in Governor Jerry Brown’s longtime home of Oakland to say that we need real climate leadership in the face of the drought. Across the state wells are drying up, more than a dozen cities are in real danger of running out of water, and there’s no question it’s being made worse by climate change. Volunteers are needed to make the march happen, so volunteer online here. Find out more about the March and how you can participate here.

Arboretum Volunteer Gardening Opportunities
The Arboretum has volunteer gardening hours throughout the week. Visit their website for details. 

Sea Slugs is an ocean-minded campus organization dedicated to environmental stewardship. It is an excellent opportunity for students (both undergrad and grad) to engage in the greater community through public service while making a positive impact on the local environment. For information about meeting times and opportunities, contact Sea Slugs at seaslug.ucsc [at] gmail [dot] com or visit their website.

Join Banana Slugs for Animals
Banana Slugs for Animals welcomes all to their weekly meetings. During the meetings they discuss Animal rights and plan events! They will be having a film screening of "Earthlings" (Date and time TBD). If you would like to know more please email slugsforanimals [at] gmail [dot] com. 
Want to get your hands dirty and nurture the plants in our campus gardens? Visit the calendar to find out when garden work days are happening here.

Get Involved with Integrated Climate & Energy Study
Interested in climate and energy sustainability? Want to get hands-on experience exploring these topics in relation to our campus? Chrissy Thomure, Climate Action Manager in the Sustainability Office, is coordinating an Integrated Climate & Energy Study with key stakeholders and a consultant. The study launches this year, and students are encouraged to participate! Email Chrissy at cthomure [at] ucsc [dot] edu to find out more.

Interested in getting involved in a campus sustainability project, but don't know how? Are you looking for partners for your current project? Have you completed a project that you would like others to learn from? Visit the Sustainability Project Clearinghouse, a centralized database of UCSC sustainability projects, today! You can view published projects or upload your own projects and ideas. For training on how to upload a project, please contact Shauna Casey at scasey [at] ucsc [dot] edu.

City and UCSC GreenWharf initiative receives the 2014 Governor's Environmental and Economic Leadership Award!

In recognition of a multiyear collaboration between the City of Santa Cruz and the University of California, Santa Cruz, the GreenWharf partnership has been recognized with the 2014 Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Award. Representatives from the City and campus accepted the award at a ceremony on January 21st at the California Environmental Protection Agency in Sacramento.

In 2011, the City and UCSC created the GreenWharf program to foster the development and incorporation of innovative technology into the structure and operations at the Santa Cruz Wharf. GreenWharf has gained momentum and now involves a number of nonprofits, Wharf businesses, private sector entities, students, and interested members of the public.

These parties are collaborating on interrelated projects that minimize the environmental impact of Wharf operations while enhancing its appeal as a visitor destination. “We are honored to receive this recognition,” said Ross Clark, Climate Change Action Coordinator with the City of Santa Cruz. “Our community is committed to economic progress with resource conservation and environmental considerations always at the forefront.”

During the Wharf’s Centennial Year in 2014, GreenWharf completed several high-profile initiatives including installing energy and cost-saving infrastructure, launching and completing a Wharf Green Business Certification Challenge, and creating an ecotourism mobile phone app.

 “CenSEPS has been working with the city to develop renewable energy testbeds in order to study the feasibility of using renewable energy sources to power local communities,” Isaacson said. “There are many projects focused on renewable energy sources that we are anticipating pursuing in cooperation with the city.”

The GreenWharf partnership also supports the City’s and UCSC’s Monterey Bay Climate Action Compact pledge to reduce municipal greenhouse gas emissions 30% by 2020 from a 1990 baseline.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

February 2015 Sustainability Profile: Adriana Murguia

Each month, our newsletter features a person or group on campus that is working toward a more sustainable world. This month features Adriana Murguia, the Friends of the Community Agroecology Network (FoCAN) Intercambio Event Coordinator. Intercambio is Spanish for exchange, yet she gets to work on bridging topics of culture and livelihoods with sustainability. 

We interviewed Adriana Murguia to learn more about how her work on campus supports sustainability efforts.

Education: 3rd year, Environmental Studies major

What's your favorite green tip?
Reducing the use of plastic. I grew up in a migrant community in which we used plastic bags to wrap our lunch and plastic containers to store our food. Now I know that I do not want carcinogens from plastic near my food.

What does "sustainability" mean to you?
Queremos un mundo donde quepan muchos mundos- “We want a world that fits many worlds” from the Zapatista movement resonates with my understanding of sustainability. I envision not only the sustainability of biodiversity but also of peoples and their cultures.

How does sustainability relate to your role at UCSC?
As the coordinator for intercambio, I have been creating a platform in the form of an 8 day conference for youth from the Community Agroecology Network’s agroeco coffee sites in Nicaragua and Mexico to exchange agroecological methods and practices which they present in forms of workshops and discussions. I also follow up with the outcomes of intercambio by being a part of their youth network. Referring to the classic term of sustainability my role places an emphasis on meeting the needs of the present and the future generations by creating capacity building with youth.

How do you practice sustainability in your daily life?
I try to incorporate sustainability in many ways, but recently I have been purchasing used textbooks whenever possible and consuming agroeco coffee regularly each quarter! 

Have you had a favorite sustainability moment at UCSC?
UCSC has given me many wonderful sustainability opportunities, some small like enjoying meals of locally sourced meal and bigger opportunities like attending bioneers.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

5th Annual Intercambio this Feburary

by Adriana Murguia

                  After participating in Intercambio (Spanish for exchange) last spring in Veracruz, MX, I was really moved by the stories of many of the cooperative leaders and youth. I personally connected with all the individual stories because I grew up with immigrant parents and a migrant community many who were previously peasant farmers. While driving down from the community of Piedra Parada, our bus driver with his young family on board spoke about the one time he visited Monterrey, CA while he worked in the lettuce fields of the central coast. Many of the youth from Mexico spoke about having family in the U.S. and their fragmented relationships. Additionally, the youth from Nicaragua, shared with me their experience of being one of the first generation after the Sandinista revolution. For them, the revolution didn't follow up with all its promises, yet they are still revolutionaries at heart.

Intercambio 2014, Veracruz Mexico 

When I learned that Intercambio would be rotated to Santa Cruz, I was more than enthusiastic to be involved with the planning process because it would mean that I would get to see them again.  Intercambio is a platform to bring the voices of youth who are developing on the ground agricultural solutions by incorporating local knowledge, with agroecological training. Many of the youth hold ideals and visions of sustainability for their community and country that do not come across to larger decision making entities. For UCSC students interested in sustainability, learning from the youth network should bring to mind­ that the primary actors carrying out sustainable actions are always not called upon as decision makers. 

Intercambio Award Ceremony 

Intercambio Events for the Public: 

Join FoCAN as they welcome youth leaders from Mexico and Nicaragua to experience sustainable food systems in Santa Cruz! 

for more information email us at: focan [at] ucsc [dot] edu

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Inter-Organizational Retreat Announcements

These announcements were written by various organizations and students on a community announcement board during our 5th Annual Sustainability Inter-Organizational Retreat.
  • Gaia Magazine is accepting student submissions of articles, photos, recipes, and more for our Spring 2015 publication! The theme this year is environmental justice and social change. Please submit your work to gaiamagazine [at] gmail [dot] com by 1/31 - we want to showcase your work!
  • Banana Slugs for Animals welcomes all to our weekly meetings. During our meetings we discuss Animal rights and plan events! We will be having a film screening of "Earthlings" (Date and time TBD). If you would like to know more please email us at slugsforanimals [at] gmail [dot] com. We can add you to our emailing list! Yay!
  • Program in Community and Agroecology (PICA) Workdays are starting Saturday, January 17. Join in for gardening and a free lunch! They will be every Saturday 10-2pm in the A-quad  in the village.
  • Mixed Ethnicities Student Headquarters (MESH) meets every Thursday at 5pm in the Redwood Lounge (e^2). For more information, email mesh.represent [at] gmail [dot] com.
  • Education for Sustainable Living Program: Are you interested in social justice, food systems, renewable energy or any other Blueprint for a Sustainable Campus topics? Take the ESLP class for 2 or 5 units next quarter! Designed and led by undergraduate students. Go to to learn more about class offerings and how to enroll.
  • Circus Slugs: throw a juggle jam every Thursday at 2pm on the Porter quad! All levels are welcome.
  • College 8 Earth Week Team: Interested in facilitating an event? We are looking to collaborate with various organizations for Earth Week 2015 (the week of Earth Day). This year's theme is "Your Plate: The effect your food choices have on you and the world around you". Questions? Contact Derek Dean at drdean [at] ucsc [dot] edu.
  • Come to the Earth Summit Forums happening every Wednesday from 5-8pm in the College 8 Red Room! Join in and learn, discuss, and plan about super important social and environmental topics! (FREE FOOD!)
  • Interested in sustainability, films, and social justice? The 50th Anniversary Sustainability Film Festival Planning Committee is seeking input and ideas from throughout campus. The film festival will take place in fall 2015, but planning begins now! Please email Melissa at mott [at] ucsc [dot] edu to learn more and get involved.