"Education, I feel, is an immensely important tool to helping communities thrive, and I love the idea of being able to communicate with others so we can teach each other, be it about sustainability, science, arts, or world affairs."
How do you want to leave your impact on the world?
My dream is to travel to developing communities in Africa, Asia, Latin America, or wherever there is need to help establish sustainable modes of living, such as renewable energy production. I would love to be able to help fix the political and social climate in the United States in order to make sustainability a national priority, but I know there is also so much we can do outside of the U.S.
What is your story? What doesn't your resume tell us about you?
Although my resume seems to indicate me to be a very tech heavy, business-oriented person, I want to emphasize that this is not at all my entire story. While I see the need to utilize engineering and business practices to make renewable energy production and other facets of sustainability more viable in our societies, I also love the arts, culture, languages, and people. I love meeting new people and learning their story. In addition, nature is such a beautiful force beyond our capacity as humans to replicate, and I want to protect our environment at all costs. Yes, renewable energy production can help spur our economy greatly in the long run, but it's not just about our technological and economic advancements. What really matters is people and the world around us. So long as we continue to destroy Earth and deplete resources, we destroy our own humanity, and this is something I want to make sure to stop. What matters most to me is the life our world and we as humans bring, and I want to dedicate my life and all my knowledge to making sure these are preserved.
Describe your dream job or career.
I want to start my own business; this much is clear to me because I love the idea of being independent and creating my own sort of project. I will feel very passionate about spending so much of my energy to making sure this project succeeds and also makes an impact on others' lives. Through my own business, I aspire to make renewable energy systems more available in developing communities. Ideally, through such a business, I can, over time, focus on other forms of sustainability, such as with education. Education, I feel, is an immensely important tool to helping communities thrive, and I love the idea of being able to communicate with others so we can teach each other, be it about sustainability, science, arts, or world affairs.
Tell us about your leadership experiences.
I am in my third year of being a Resident Assistant on campus, and have met many very bright and ambitious students as well as staff members in the residence halls. My tasks have included organizing community events (i.e. through scheduling times and spacing for activities, inviting faculty presenters, advertising throughout the community, etc.) and liaising between Residential Life and the students in the residence halls. I have honed many skills namely planning as well as communication due to the need to present in front of staff members or residents as well to aid residents with academic and personal issues. Due to the intimate nature of this role on campus, I can truly say that the residents as well as staff have had a huge, positive impact on my life because of the warmth they have shown to those willing to help them as well as the passion they exude for their work and dreams.
Describe a personal experience that has directly or indirectly influenced your career path.
Coming into college, I was given the book No Impact Man as an optional reading for incoming freshman. Being the bookworm and nature enthusiast I am, I eagerly decided to read the story. I did not realize just how much of an impact the story would have on me (no pun intended). The book is written by a man that decided to spend a year living with zero net carbon footprint on the environment. What this meant was that he had to avoid public transportation, eat local food, cut off his electricity, and essentially revert to a much more intensive lifestyle than most Americans are used to. While the author made sure to ease into this lifestyle, he nevertheless struggled at first to live with the personal as well as social implications. In the end, however, he learned to love this lifestyle. He did not advocate going completely "into the dark" with no electricity and the neglect of other modern marvels. However, in addition to his numerous facts about the environment and humanity's lasting impact on it, the author often emphasized the harm done by the American lifestyle. We live essentially on a highway; every thing we do is to get from point A to point B, and yet what about everything in between? We try to make every "mundane" task quicker (i.e. through machines or high-speed delivery) and we constantly are trying to speed up the "boring" time through T.V. or games on our phone. We forget to live life; instead we live for each big moment and, eventually, those "big" moments become mundane as well. It is as if we are sleeping away our lives.
What is the biggest take-away and/or favorite part of your GREEN Program experience?
It was very inspiring to be in the company of so many intelligent people that felt so passionately about the environment and its preservation. It felt good to know that there are others out there that also plan to dedicate their lives to making a difference in the world, and yet also know how to enjoy what lies around them. Going hiking through glaciers and beautiful mountains is one thing, but to be with others that appreciate the experience just as much was an adventure I will never forget. Meeting these people inspired me to keep going forward with my dreams in sustainability.
Tell us about your Capstone project experience and your journey, your team, the ideation and implementation.
How will you use this experience to advance your personal goals?
I feel I grew tremendously having traveled to a new country with a group of people I did not know and I also honed many skills in communication and problem solving through the Capstone. However, the greatest impact on me through The Green Program was the inspiration I gained by working with such passionate and driven people. This inspiration has been one of the main driving forces helping me to excel in my academic career and pushing me into a career in environmental activism. For this reason, I cannot recommend The Green Program enough. It is such an amazing experience to be around people that care so much about what they do and about their treatment of the world. I will never forget the time I spent with this group in Iceland and the impact they had on me.
Where and when would you go in a time machine? Why?
600 years ago to where I grew up (Springfield, Massachusetts). Before Europeans came to America, the continent was teeming with life and culture, and so much of this culture has been lost to the world. Scattered across the modern United States were many different peoples, each with their own distinct customs and beliefs. Something that seemed to be prevalent throughout so many of the tribes was an appreciation for Earth and sustainability, which is amazing especially considering the government that currently presides over these lands and its views on sustainability. I would love to have experienced what life was like in such a society and how people felt about their lives and the lives of those around them. Was this area as dangerous as people today would try to argue, or was there an intrinsic beauty within the culture that seems to be lacking in our society today? Unfortunately, we will never know.
You're hosting an intimate dinner party. Select 3 figures you would invite (dead or alive, fictional or non-fictional; can't be friends or family).
Marco Polo, Harriet Tubman, and Confucius