Design a site like this with WordPress.com
Get started

Student Activists Spark Change in the University: The SERS Undergraduate Education Committee

By: the SERS Undergraduate Education Committee 

The SERS Undergraduate Education Committee is a group of students with the goal of  improving the Environment Resources and Sustainability (ERS) curriculum. The committee works with SERS students, faculty, and staff to make improvements on ERS programming and to support the interests of students in their education. Every second week, the committee meets Monday at 5:30pm EST. If you are looking to make a difference in SERS education, our last meeting for this term is on April 5, 2021.

As a committee, we have 3 main goals. We aim to create a framework for collaboration between students and the department to strengthen the overall SERS community. By listening to students, we also seek to develop well-informed and researched initiatives and projects. Ultimately, the committee seeks to create an inclusive and safe space for discussing student concerns and through taking effective action, enhance the educational experience of students. 

Our current initiatives include our Inclusion, Diversity, and Race in ERS Curricula project, as well as hosting town halls for the ERS student body to share their experiences, thoughts, and ideas on their experience within the program. 

The Inclusion, Diversity and Race project stemmed from the discussion ERS students began having on BIPOC issues. We expressed the desire to have more diverse perspectives represented in our courses. The goal of this project is to foster an intersectional approach within ERS curricula to represent the SERS student body. Short term goals include incorporating diverse perspectives on core themes through readings, course resources and objectives. Long term goals, which are a collaborative effort between faculty and students, include the equitable hiring of instructors and structural improvements to courses. 

This project is continually evolving to represent the perspectives of the wider SERS population, which is perhaps best represented by the most recent town hall held by the committee on inclusion, diversity and race. At this town hall, students were given a platform to discuss their thoughts and take a solutions-based approach on equipping the department to better understand these issues. The results of this town hall will be summarized and distributed amongst the SERS community. The committee is looking forward to hosting more town halls with students and faculty in the future, on a variety of different topics.

As a committee composed of dedicated students working to improve student learning and experience, we believe that the student voice is integral to achieving our mission of creating change for the better. Students are the people who feel the greatest impact on what occurs in SERS’ education, thus they have the right to feel heard and understood when it comes to their learning. By empowering their voice, students can have a sense of community and place on campus, feel trusted with their own education and become further engaged with what they are learning.

Advertisement

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: