• Radhika Iyengar

New Jersey Climate Education Summit 2022

Updated: Feb 3

Let us come together to discuss sustainability and justice as key components of New Jersey's Climate Education policy. The Center for Sustainable Development at the Earth Institute, Columbia University will be hosting this event. This will be the 2nd annual Climate Change Education Summit to discuss policy and practice to further Climate Change Education in New Jersey.

Partners to the event include:

New Jersey Audubon

Biotrail New Yorks

UN Sustainable Solutions Network SDGs Today

UN Sustainable Solutions Network USA

The Summit will include free workshops led by youth activists, educators, education and sustainability policy experts to further participants' skills on climate storytelling, community organizing and thinking about ways to integrate learning and action toward sustainability and justice in schools and communities.

2-4th February 3:30 to 6:30pm.

2nd Feb 2022

3:30pm -3:45pm

Keynote: First Lady of New Jersey Tammy Murphy

Introduction: Radhika Iyengar

3:45 - 4:30pm

Topic: Status of Climate Education in NJ: A Policy Dialogue

Marc Rogoff, Lead Environmental Education Specialist at the New Jersey department for Environmental Protection

John Henry, Senior Manager, STEAM & Sustainable Schools

Audience: Teachers and School Administrators


Topic: Understanding NJ’s Climate Resilience and Local Action

Moderation: Jazmin Mora

4:30 to 5:00pm-Localization of SDGs in education and local community action

Alainna Lynch on NJ SDG Index and discussion of local action, SDGs, USA a part of SDSN


Randall Solomon on The role of municipalities and schools in making Jersey Sustainable

The New Jersey Sustainable State of the State that tracks our progress toward a sustainable future.

Audience: Teachers and School Administrators


Global Stories and Local Action

Maryam Rabiee, UNSDSN SDGS Today On the Power of Storymaps

William Bertolloti and his students from Plainedge High School, New York.

Panel Moderation: Radhika Iyengar

Audience: Teachers and Students

3rd Feb 2022


Introduction: By Allison Mulch

Schools and Climate Action:

ANJEE- Mike Chodroff, Past President of ANJEE and Founder of the The Ripple Center

Frida Ruiz & Bianca Palomina - The Green Cause

Navyaa Jain - New Jersey Student Sustainability Coalition

Ben Rich - Science Educator at MKA & OASIS North Coordinato

Audience: Teachers and Students


Introduction: Jazmin Mora

Student Research on Climate Education

4:30 to 5pm: Carolyn McGrath and her students from Hopewell Valley Central High School.

Nadia Chasalow and Akhansha Arvind, seniors at Hopewell Valley Central High School and leaders of the HVCHS Youth Environmental Society, will present about biomimicry and ways to incorporate it in classroom and extracurricular activities. They will also discuss their experiences participating in the 2020 Biomimicry

Youth Design Challenge and running virtual workshops for participants around the world.

Tabitha and Lilian are two high school students and authors of the Sustainable Fashion newsletter. Starting as just a simple Girl Scout project,

Lilian and Tabitha decided to create a newsletter that spreads information on the importance of sustainability in clothing. Through their newsletter, their hope is to inspire others to be more thoughtful before purchasing and live a more sustainable lifestyle.

Audience: Teachers and Students

5:00 - 5:30 Betsy Freeman and her students

Introduction: Jazmin Mora

Collaborative Action to Curb Climate Change and Food Waste across Schools

And Insight into “Greenwashing”

Student Action Researchers will discuss their collective action in collaborating schools for UN SDG 13.3 Climate Action, 12.3 Responsible Consumption and Production, and 4.7 Quality Education. Their shared goal: to support international, national, and state goals to halve food waste and mitigate climate change – starting in their spheres of influence and control – the school cafeteria. The students are collaborating members of the Columbia University Center for Sustainable Development Eco Ambassador network, as well as leaders in developing intersectional alliances and action for the UN SDGs in their own schools and communities. Hailing from three states, these GIS storytellers will share their work from research to advocacy to mobilization to student-driven teaching, learning, action, and best practices.

The team is represented by:

Dr. Jonathan Hart | Superintendent of Schools for the Readington Township School District. Prior to coming to Readington, Dr. Hart served as the Director of Human Resources for the Marlboro Township School District. His previous experience also includes appointments as Acting Assistant Superintendent and Assistant Director of Special Services for the Flemington-Raritan School District. Dr. Hart is an Adjunct Instructor at The College of New Jersey. Dr. Hart and his wife, Kara, are the proud parents of two sons Luke and Logan.

Betsy Freeman | Readington Schools, Student EcoAmbassador Advisor, Teacher, Gift and Development and Enrichment, Student Action Research Coach, and District Coordinator of Green Initiatives and Sustainability. Betsy has a Masters from Columbia University Teachers College, and EdD work in Educational Leadership and Management from Drexel University. Her focus is on student-driven inquiry and innovation, action research, and education for sustainability.

Readington Middle School Students:

  • Callum Suggitt | EcoA Strategy Lead, Grade 7

  • Marcos Hernandez | EcoA Operations Lead, Grade 7

  • Noah Bielen | EcoA Field Research Lead, Grade 7

  • Philip Kazantsev | EcoA Scientific Research Lead, Grade 8

School Partners:

  • Sophia Berman | EcoA Youth Advisor, GIS StoryTeller, and Senior at Lower Moreland High School, Huntingdon Valley, PA

  • Chris Serrao | EcoA Youth Advisor, GIS StoryTeller, and Sophomore at Phillips Exeter Academy, Exeter, NH

  • Ashley Jun | Community EcoAmbassador, GIS Storyteller, and 8th grader at Millburn Middle School, Millburn, NJ


Introduction: Radhika Iyengar

Action Civics and Climate Education: Organizing for Community Change as Learning

Anjuli Ramos-Busot, Sierra Club, NJ

Emily Fano, National Wildlife Federation in New York City

Tara Stafford Ocansey, Executive Director, Children’s Environmental Literacy Foundation

Vicky Garufi, Director of Education, Children’s Environmental Literacy Foundation

Audience: Teachers and Community-based Organizations

4th Feb 2022


Connecting the New Jersey Climate Education Summit to the National Picture of Climate Education Policy

Frank Niepold

Climate Education Coordinator, Senior Climate Education Program Manager, Climate.gov Teaching Climate section lead Action for Climate Empowerment National Focal Point for the United States

Moderation by Aalok Bhatt and Radhika Iyengar

Audience: Teachers and School Administrators

4:00 to 4:30:

Radhika Iyengar, Curriculum and Resources for Integrating Climate Change Education & Global Citizenship Eco-ambassadors Program (3:30 to 4pm)

Audience: Teachers and School Administrators


Panel Moderation: Radhika

Moving forward with Justice and Sustainability

Panel discussion

Christina Kwauk, Education Consultant and Research Director at Unbounded Associates

Felisa Tibbits, UNESCO Chair in Human Rights and Higher Education and Chair in Human Rights Education at the Human Rights Centre of Utrecht University (Netherlands).

Audience: Teachers & Students

5:30 - 6:00

Introduction: Allison Mulch

Sustainability and Health Care

Elizabeth Cerceo, MD, Chair, Cooper Green Team: received approval to engage sustainability consultant to assess and plan Cooper’s sustainable future

Audience: Teachers & Students

6:00 to 6:30pm

Moving Ahead

Jeffrey Sachs, Professor Columbia University

Workshop: Moving forward jotting points from week

Audience: Students and teachers

Register here for the event


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