USU's Champions of a Healthy Environment

Utah State University Student Sustainability Office and Sustainability Council are celebrating Earth Day and honoring the campus community’s sustainability award winners. In addition to this year’s online events and annual EcoHunt, the campus community nominated individuals for the annual sustainability awards. With pleasure, the Community, Culture and Communication work group of the Sustainability Council is announcing this year’s winners.

Courtney Flint, Sustainability Educator Award

Flint, a professor of sociology and community resource specialist for USU Extension, has helped the USU community become more sustainable through her teaching, research and mentoring. She is part of the leadership team of USU’s Climate Adaptation Science Program, and Flint has taken on an Extension specialist role to address the wellbeing and sustainability of communities throughout Utah and the Intermountain West. Her research projects about environmental-related wellbeing, water reuse perceptions and human-river relationships are instructive about the connection between people and nature. In Flint’s time at USU, she has collaborated with 47 undergrads, 12 master’s students, 10 doctoral students and two post-docs in various aspects of environmental, community and sustainability research.

Cristal Gonzalez Rosas, Sustainability Innovation Award

Gonzalez Rosas, a senior in Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning, embodies sustainability. Gonzalez Rosas and fellow interns worked with the City of Logan on creating a sustainability podcast and translating outreach materials to reach a broader audience.

Additionally, she was involved in Flint’s environmental sociology project about wellbeing in the Wasatch. In her personal life, Gonzalez Rosas creates small habits to live sustainably, like reusing bags, walking and showering with lukewarm water. Gonzalez Rosas exemplifies that little actions add up to important results.

Rebecca McFaul, Employee Sustainability Advocacy Award

McFaul, a professor of professional practice and violinist with the Fry Street Quartet, is a leader in an ambitious program of environmental sustainability. FSQ’s Crossroads Project combines science, storytelling and music as a backdrop for contemplation of human effects on Earth. The quartet recently developed an online premiere to reach a broader audience without travel. Additionally, McFaul has been instrumental in increasing climate awareness in the NOVA Chamber Music Series.

At USU, she has been equally impactful. She helped develop USU’s Planetary Thinking workshop and the CCA AmeriCorps Sustainability Fellow position. Her students cite her as an inspiration to shift from being climate-aware to climate-activists.

Sage Sutcliffe, Student Sustainability Leadership Award

Sutcliffe, a senior in human-environment geography, is passionate and strives to improve her own sustainable lifestyle and share her knowledge with others. She is a full-time student who has multiple jobs and responsibilities. Yet, she makes time to serve as the president of USU’s Sustainability Club and work in the Student Sustainability Office. Sutcliffe has worked tirelessly and enthusiastically to help students write sustainability grants to make changes across campus.

According to Sutcliffe’s award nomination, “Sage is truly a hard-working, deserving, intelligent and sustainable queen.”

About the USU Sustainability Council

The Utah State University Sustainability Council formed in 2007 after the university became a signatory to the American College and University Presidents’ Carbon Commitment (ACUPCC). The Council seeks to reduce carbon emissions as well as conserve resources and enhance quality of life by promoting sustainability in USU’s academic and service missions.

About the Student Sustainability Office

The mission of the Utah State University Student Sustainability Office is to create a place on campus where students can generate and get help for their green ideas, obtain research grants for sustainability, and gain knowledge to take into their future.

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