Recently, the Food Studies program hosted a special celebration at the Urban Farm to recognize and celebrate the first ever cohort of Food Studies Minors at the University of Oregon. Eight bright and hardworking students graduated this past spring with “Food Studies” emblazoned on their transcripts. In honor of their accomplishment and to help them remember their time in the food studies program they were gifted beautiful, hand-carved maple spoons made by our friends at Wanna Spoon. There are currently more than 50 students signed up for the minor, so there will be more occasions for celebration in the years ahead!
Congrats to our first graduating class! Go UOFS 2017!
It’s here! The 2017 Ecotone has arrived, carrying on another year of tradition here at the UO Environmental Studies Program. Each year, ENVS graduate students, undergraduates, and faculty come together to produce this creative literary publication, and every issue is full of unique surprises and thought-provoking insights into the world around us.
Please stop by the ENVS office to pick up your very own hard copy.
A huge thanks again to everyone who made it possible!
Date: Monday, June 19th, 2017
Location: Women’s Quadrangle (Pioneer Mother Lawn)
Regalia: Our ceremony is casual and regalia is not required. Many students wear caps and gowns, and many do not. It’s your choice!
Don’t forget: If you plan on graduating this Spring term, you should have already applied for a Spring undergraduate degree on Duckweb. Contact the Registrar for further questions. Additionally, all ENVS/ESCI student need to do a grad check with a student adviser or with a faculty advisers, Katie Lynch or Peg Boulay. If you aren’t sure you’ve been cleared, feel free to drop in to COL 144, Monday-Friday, 8:30am-4:30pm.
This past fall one of our ENVS 201 discussion sections chose to do their community based project at the Buena Vista Spanish Immersion School, which has its own school garden. Besides typical garden maintenance, students Garrett Walden, Harley Prophitt, Jack Tomasik, Evey Mengelkoch, Katie Robison, and Ben Hinde wrote a proposal and received a $3000 dollar grant from Annie’s Homegrown Foods in order to make improvements at the garden. These funds will provide the school garden with an irrigation system, composting station, and plenty of tools.
The students also found a program through the state of Oregon that allows the school cafeteria to purchase produce from the school garden at current market value, which will enable the students to eat what they’ve grown while also generating revenue for the school. The grant from Annie’s will also be used to help offset the startup costs for this school garden food reimbursement program.
ENVS Director Richard York is the 2017 recipient of the Fred Buttel Distinguished Contribution Award from the American Sociological Association Section on Environment and Technology (ASA-ETS).
“This award recognizes scholars for outstanding service, innovation, and publication in environmental sociology and/or the sociology of technology. This award was founded to express appreciation when a person’s life work is deemed extraordinarily meritorious by the Section.”
UO will host this year’s Joint Campus Conference (JCC) on May 30th, 2017. The JCC is an annual event that brings together graduate students and faculty from three programs: the Environmental Sciences Program at Oregon State University, the Environmental Sciences and Management Program at Portland State University, and the Environmental Studies Program at the University of Oregon.
See here for the schedule and more information on how to submit your poster and oral presentation abstracts!
Photographs from the Environmental Leadership Program (ELP) course “Reflections on Water” are currently on display at Townshed’s Teahouse as part of a collaboration between several artists. Anya Vollstedt, a current student at UO, curated the show “because it gives smaller artists a chance to be present in a large space such as Townshend’s. Multiple artists bring several pieces without the pressure of having to fill the entire space.” All works on display have an environmental focus.
Many of the featured works are available for purchase. A minimum of 25% of art sales will be going to FAHA, the Freedom from Aerial Herbicides Alliance. FAHA is a petition committee comprised of volunteers who are working to have a ban of aerial spraying in Lane County put on the ballot. This ban would include ALL spraying, agricultural as well as forest related. Each artist decides whether they want to donate more than the 25% of their art sales to FAHA, and several artists who are giving 100% of their proceeds to FAHA.
The show runs now through the last day of April. Be sure to check it out!
See how students in Philosophy 410 connected their discussions around ethics in medical settings to their practical applications in an actual hospital here.
ENVS, along with several campus groups, is co-sponsoring the 2017 Coalition Against Environmental Racism’s 23rd Annual CAER Conference: “Wisdom in Water: Protecting a Universal Right.” on Saturday April 8th, 2017.
CAER is a University of Oregon student organization committed to bridging the gaps of social and environmental equality. Environmental Racism addresses the fact that underprivileged people, specifically communities of color, are disproportionately impacted by pollution, waste disposal, hazardous sites, resource depletion, and natural disasters in the natural and built environment. CAER exists as a resistance to this inequality, and as a strong and visible piece of the Environmental Justice Movement — a movement composed of the mobilization of people, communities, and organizations committed to fighting Environmental Racism in urban and rural settings across the country and the world.
The theme for this year’s conference is centered around water due to the recent struggles the state of Oregon and the nation face in regards to clean water and access.
The keynote speaker will be Robert D. Bullard, Distinguished Professor of Urban Planning and Environmental Policy in the Barbara Jordan-Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs at Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas. He is often described as the father of environmental justice. Professor Bullard received his Ph.D. degree from Iowa State University. He is the author of seventeen books that address sustainable development, environmental racism, urban land use, industrial facility siting, community reinvestment, housing, transportation, climate justice, emergency response, smart growth, and regional equity. Professor Bullard was featured in the July 2007 CNN People You Should Know, Bullard: Green Issue is Black and White. In 2008, Newsweek named him one of 13 Environmental Leaders of the Century. And that same year, Co-op America honored him with its Building Economic Alternatives Award (BEA).
Please join us to discuss these important issues, to learn about Environmental Justice advocates’ work and discuss ways in which we can continue to restore ourselves and our communities.
Follow the Facebook event page for more details and updates:
RSVP to the conference: tinyurl.com/CAER2017
(It is not required to RSVP but we highly encourage)
Hope to see you there!
Erin Moore is an Associate Professor in Environmental Studies and Architecture. Her work explores architecture in the context of environmental ethics, fossil fuel consumption, carbon sequestration, and climate change. Watch her interview with UO Today here.
Watch Richard York’s interview with UO Today here!
Congratulations to all our faculty who have won awards this year!
-Brendan Bohannan (Biology) was recently elected to the American Academy of Microbiology Fellows.
-Kory Russell (Landscape Architecture),
Peter Walker (Geography), and Nicolae Morar (Philosophy) have each received the 2017 Faculty Research Award from the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation.
–Ronald Mitchell (Political Science) is one of three recipients of the 2016-2017 Tykeson Teaching Award. The award annually recognizes one exceptional faculty member in each of the three CAS divisions.
– Stephen Wooten for won the UO Excellence in Teaching Award for Sustainability for his work developing the Food Studies Program.
-Program director Richard York is the 2017 recipient of the Fred Buttel Distinguished Contribution Award from the American Sociological Association Section on Environment and Technology (ASA-ETS).
Mitchell’s research focuses on understanding international environmental treaties and which factors make some treaties more “effective” than others in getting countries to practice environmental protection. His interests include both researching the minutiae of specific treaties and how they are designed and implemented, as well as broader patterns and data on efficacy that emerge from examining hundreds of environmental treaties and protocols that different countries have signed. His inspiration for the work stems from an awareness of the environmental harm that humankind has historically wrought at the personal, local, national, and international level and the sustaining hope that providing his students with proper research skills might contribute to mitigating human-caused environmental damage in future.
For Mitchell, there is an indelible link between research and teaching. As he describes it, reading the works of other researchers broadens his understanding of issues related to treaties, and conducting his own research requires “active, careful, and rigorous thinking about these issues”. But, effective teaching requires identifying ways to communicate his own knowledge clearly and succinctly, which in turn deepens his own understanding of the topic. Thus, research and teaching are part of an “iterative” and mutually reinforcing process.
However, one of best parts about serving this dual role is the ability to bring students into the research process. Here, Mitchell puts it best himself:
“One of the great pleasures of being a faculty member who cares about teaching and research comes from inviting students to do research with me. Over 25 years of teaching at UO, I have invited over 75 undergraduate and graduate students to help me build a database of all international environmental agreements. Those students have helped create a database that now provides the most comprehensive list of international environmental treaties in the world. The most rewarding part of involving students in my research, however, has been the deep friendships that develop through the mentoring process. Students I have worked with have gone on to excellent graduate schools and/or positions in government, nongovernmental organizations, and universities. These students, and my close relationships with them, inspire me by their extraordinary commitment to helping protect the environment that we live in and are a part of.”
If you are interested in learning more about Mitchell’s work, links to his video lectures can be found here; or read his book International Politics and the Environment (Sage, 2010).
For more information about international environmental treaties, visit the International Environmental Agreements Database Project.
ENVS is co-sponsoring two book readings with the English Department, the English Department Diversity Committee, and the Ethnic Studies Department. Priscilla Ybarra will be reading from her book Writing the Goodlife: Mexican Americans and the Environment on March 1st at 4:00 PM.
Sarah Wald will be reading from her book The Nature of California: Race, Citizenship, and Farming since the Dustbowl, followed by a response from Sarah Jaquette Ray, on March 2nd at 4:00 PM. Both readings will take place in the Knight Library Browsing Room.
Mark your calendars! ENVS is co-sponsoring this upcoming talk on environmental video games:
“The Problem of Modeling (and Rendering) Trees” with Alenda Chang
Can you commune with nature in a video game? The rise of so-called “walking simulator” games suggests that you can, even as games remain undertheorized as environmental systems. Ranging from first-person walkers, to plant modeling software and asset libraries, to gestural terraforming in virtual reality, this presentation will outline just a few of the ways in which the environmental humanities can contribute to the future of game studies.
ALENDA Y. CHANG is an Assistant Professor in Film and Media Studies at UC Santa Barbara. With a multidisciplinary background in biology, literature, and film, she specializes in merging ecocritical theory with the analysis of contemporary media. Her writing has recently been featured in _Ant Spider Bee_, _Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment_, and _Qui Parle_, and her current book project develops ecological frameworks for understanding and designing digital games. She also maintains the _Growing Games_ blog as a resource for researchers in game and ecomedia studies and the environmental humanities.
Her talk will take place on February 22, 2017 from 4:00 – 5:30 pm in EMU 023, Lease Crutcher Lewis Room.
Are you looking for an internship or a volunteer opportunity? Environmental Connect is just for you!
Taylor McHolm (ABD – English & ENVS) will be presenting on his dissertation research: “Inverting Albedo: Reflections on and in the Anthropocene”, Jan 19th, 12:00-1:30pm, COL 249. Lunch will be provided.