The mission of the Kresge Common Ground Center is to create cultural change for social justice, environmental regeneration, and economic viability. They act as a catalyst and facilitator of systemic change through undergraduate action-education, research, advocacy, and civic engagement. The Center has a large base of community support from its existing programs in Nonviolent Communication, Restorative Justice, Transformative Action, The World Café and the Kresge Garden, as well as existing partnerships with civil society organizations promoting the values, principles and practices of Common Ground.
Spring quarter at the Common Ground Center will offer the opportunity for transformative education and hands-on permaculture skills. Christine King, will be teaching the classes Transformative Communication (2-units) and Transformative Justice (3-units) and David Shaw will be leading Collaborative Learning: Permaculture Skills and Transition Towns (2 or 5 units). The Collaborative Learning class will be hosting many well-known players in the permaculture world through the speaker series.
Below is a list of Common Ground's upcoming events this spring!
Trathen Heckman - Can we change the world in a garden?: April 9
Join the Common Ground Center's Collaborative Learning Class for their speaker series! On April 9th at the Kresge Town Hall from 2 P.M. to 3:45 P.M., Trathen Heckman will be speaking about how to change the world starting with a garden. The presentation will highlight and encourage engagement with the Community Resilience Challenge, a community action campaign that is inspiring thousands of citizens and over 100 groups regionally and nationally to take action to grow food, conserve water, save energy, reduce waste and build community.
Community Gardens and Public Orchards in Santa Cruz County: April 11
Join the Common Ground Center's Collaborative Learning Class for their speaker series! On April 11th at the Village A3 from 6 P.M. to 8 P.M., Community Gardens and Public Orchards in Santa Cruz County with Ana Rasmussen (Mesa Verde Gardens), Steve (SC Fruit Tree Project) and others will be speaking. The mission of Mesa Verde Gardens is to empower low-income residents of Santa Cruz County to meet the immediate and basic need for food security by increasing their access to pesticide-free, fresh fruits and vegetables through the creation of small organic gardens. The Santa Cruz Fruit Tree Project promotes urban agriculture, builds community, and reduces waste by harvesting surplus fruit, hosting food processing workshops, and supporting the propagation and cultivation of fruit trees.
Jon Young - Understanding Bird Language to Bring More Presence to All That You Do: April 23
Join the Common Ground Center's Collaborative Learning Class for their speaker series! On April 23rd at the Porter Meadow from 2 P.M. to 3:45 P.M., Jon Young will come to speak about how bird language can be added to our everyday lives. Jon has been mentoring folks in the nearly lost art of understanding bird and animal language. Just as science is beginning to see the credibility in this ancient skill, Jon has been leading communities world-wide to get these skills back through lectures, workshops, media.
We Are Wiser Together - Igniting Possibilities Through Intergenerational Connection: April 26
Join the Common Ground Center to celebrate UCSC's 50th Anniversary through igniting possibilities with intergenerational communication. The event is on Sunday April 26th from 12 P.M. to 2:30 P.M. at the Kresge Town Hall.
Pandora Thomas - We Are The One's!: April 30
Join the Common Ground Center's Collaborative Learning Class for their speaker series! On April 30th at Kresge Town Hall at 2 P.M. and again at the Village A3 at 6:30pm, Pandora Thomas will speak to taking action and being the change in the world via hands-on participation. She is co-founder of Earthseed Consulting LLC, a holistic consulting ﬁrm whose work deepens the impacts of environmental advocacy in the lives of diverse communities. Most recently she directed the Environmental Service Learning Initiative as well as serving as the environmental educator for Grind for the Green. Both programs aim to reconnect youth of color to the earth using innovative strategies.
UCSC Bioneers Conference: May 1-3
The Kresge Common Ground Center will also be hosting the first annual UCSC Bioneers Conference and are looking for student keynote speakers and student/faculty/community member workshop leaders. Click here to learn more about the UCSC Bioneers Conference or to submit a proposal.
Doniga Markegard - Tools for large Scale Grassland Restoration: May 14
Join the Common Ground Center's Collaborative Learning Class for their speaker series! On May 14th at Kresge Town Hall at 2 P.M. and again at the Village A3 at 6:30pm, Doniga Markegard will speak to large scale grassland restoration. She will show how producing food by mimicking patterns found in nature will lead to higher nutrition, carbon sequestration and returning biodiversity and abundance. Through her direct experience in stewarding rangeland in California she will provide examples of both the theory and the practice to regenerative ranching.
Patricia St. Onge - Walk Out, Walk On: May 19
Join the Common Ground Center's Collaborative Learning Class for their speaker series! On May 19th at Kresge Town Hall from 2 P.M. to 3:45 P.M., Patricia St. Onge will come to speak about a rite of passage for the people and the planet. is the founder of Seven Generations Consulting and brings over twenty years of experience leading and working with nonprofit and public sector agencies. She provides training, consulting and technical assistance in the areas of community organizing, social justice advocacy, organizational development, cross-cultural effectiveness, consensus building, spiritual & personal coaching.