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A new Earth conversation

Introducing A new Earth conversation

A new Earth conversation (NEC) is a campus-wide climate change initiative in which we explore and reckon with the human impact on Earth's ecosystem, and consider what is possible from here.

Over the last three years, we’ve been in conversation within our faculty community on the nature and scope of the climate crisis, and our responsibilities as educators in the face of it — through Teach-ins, Councils on the Uncertain Human Future, public programs and faculty TRIO events.

This fall, with generous funding from the Christopher Reynolds Foundation, we begin to fulfil the vision for our collective response, generated by the faculty over these years. 

Learn more about the full scope of the initiative on the NEC website

What are our responsibilities as educators in this time?
Check out the NEC proposal and website

What questions regarding climate concern you most… and what conversations do you want to have?
Share your thoughts for our fall campus-wide conversation 
All Together Now (September 29, 2018)


How is your own work already linked to issues of climate? 
How might your teaching contribute to this conversation?
Collaboratives, FYIs, TRIOS, programs and more

ANNOUNCEMENTS

FUNDING

In November 2017, the NEC and the Council on the Uncertain Human Future (CUHF) both received major funding from the Christopher Reynolds Foundation. It allows us to begin the work of Collaboratives (the core curricular dimension of the NEC), develop a program called Listening in Nature, and enlist staff support.

Funding for the CUHF supports the growth of Councils and their emerging projects here and abroad, and Council practice on campus and in local high schools. CUHF received additional funding from the Kaiser Family Foundation  (councilontheuncertainhumanfuture.org).
 

NEW STAFF

Diane Lee (left) is the new Assistant Director of the Council on the Uncertain Human Future. She is a graphic designer and videographer, and has taught both at Clark and RISD (where she received her MFA). 

Rose Gallogly ('16), is the new NEC Program Assistant. She double-majored in Geography and Studio Art (graphic design) at Clark, and has worked as a designer since then; as a senior, she received the Howard Jefferson Prize.

ELEMENTS OF NEC

COLLABORATIVES

A key component of NEC is the development of (or adaptation of existing courses into) Collaboratives that model dialogic and emergent learning, and cultivate an arc between seeking to know and choosing to act in relationship to the climate crisis. 

In a Collaborative, students, faculty, and community partners engage in a genuine inquiry and collective search for insight around climate-related issue. Starting with a shared Council experience, members ask What is the question we most want to grapple with? What do we need to know now? Given what we have come to know, how do we choose to respond?

Dynamic, emergent, and iterative, the work of Collaboratives takes shape through this process of inquiry and discernment, which may lead to a shared action or intervention. Its members build horizontal relationships of teaching and learning as they grapple with an issue of collective concern.

We are already in conversation with many of you about possible future Collaboratives. If you'd like to know more, please be in touch! NEC funding is available to support your work. 
Our first pilot Collaborative, being offered in Fall 2018 by Steve Levin, is Ecologies in Crisis: Views from the Humanities (ENG 256/356). Participants will explore the idea of 'ecology' in cross-cultural perspective, with particular consideration to literary responses to climate change in different cultural and political contexts. 

FIRST YEAR INTENSIVES

Are you teaching a First Year Intensive (FYI) related to climate change? Please let us know. We would like to bring all of us doing that into conversation, and sponsor programming of benefit to the whole group. Contact Sarah Buie or Ellen Foley.

UPCOMING EVENTS


CAMPUS-WIDE CONVERSATION
All Together Now — politics, economy, social justice, and the climate
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 29th | Campus-wide
We are now soliciting questions, conversations, and presentations for this campus-wide event. Please email Sarah Buie or Ellen Foley if you have ideas for contributions!

NEC LEADERSHIP

Lead Co-Conveners  
Sarah Buie V&PA 
Ellen Foley IDCE

Co-Conveners
Rinku Roy Chowdhury Geography
Amy Richter History 
Deb Robertson Biology
Core Leadership
Chuck Agosta Physics
Jessica Bane-Robert Writing Center
Ed Carr IDCE
Steve Levin English
Jenny Isler Sustainable Clark
Rachael Shea Library
Walter Wright Philosophy
Clark faculty members speaking at a panel discussion
Chris Williams (Geography), and NEC Core Members Ed Carr (IDCE), Deb Robertson (Biology), and Chuck Agosta (Physics) participate in an NEC panel in September 2017 entitled "Forget Paris? The Climate Accord After U.S. Withdrawal."
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