Mysterious sword fern die-off remains a growing concern

The puzzling death of sword ferns in Seattle’s Seward Park is under ongoing investigation by Tim Billo, Paul Shannon and national fern experts the two are consulting with to address the problem. King 5 News and KUOW spoke with Billo and Shannon and wrote about the concern recently as did Sierra Magazine, reporting yesterday that 11 acres of sword ferns have died in Seward Park so far, with no regrowth. 

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International program scholarships with Sept. deadlines!

There is still time to apply for several fully funded year-long international experiences! See details below from Robin Chang, UW’s Office of Merit Scholarships, Fellowships & Awards. Rising seniors, new or current graduate and professional students, and alumni may be eligible to apply:   Luce Scholars Program – Apply by Sept. 6, 2017 This is a great opportunity for those with little or no prior experience in, or education about, Asian countries to add this valuable perspective to their future career interests! 

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Congratulations to our 2017-2018 Environmental Leadership Scholars!

Congratulations to Environmental Studies majors Cassie Maylor and Olivia Scott, our 2017-2018 Environmental Leadership Scholarship recipients! Program on the Environment, with support from generous donors, awards scholarships to two students each year who demonstrate a passion for environmental studies, integrative thought and action in their academics and activities, and a vision of how they hope to make a positive difference in the world. 

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Sustainability: Personal Choices, Broad Impacts

Kristi Straus's popular class on sustainability gives students an introspective look at how they contribute to the waste stream, via personal habits, consumption and daily resource use. Her course is offered in the Autumn, Winter and Summer quarters. Kristi is a recent recipient of UW's Distinguished Teaching Award and is leading a flipped classroom study abroad experience in China as part of this sustainability course. The course is a featured class on the College of the Environment‘s site. Read more and consider signing up for Autumn quarter while spots are still open. ENVIR 239: Sustainability: Personal Choices, Broad Impacts – Present frameworks of sustainability and learn about the history of sustainability. Experience sustainability in action and learn how your personal choices impact the world.  

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Autumn 2017 ENVIR Courses

Thinking about courses for the Autumn quarter? Here are our featured courses: ENVIR 100: Introduction to Environmental Studies – Great course for exploring environmental majors. Learn about environmental issues in a local and global context. Add a service-learning component for 5 cr. ENVIR 239: Sustainable Choices, Broad Impacts – Present frameworks of sustainability and learn about the history of sustainability. Experience sustainability in action and learn how your personal choices impact the world.  

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Tim Billo speaks on King 5 News about fern die-off in Seward Park

Sword ferns provide valuable ecosystem benefits, holding soil in place to prevent erosion and invasive plant growth. They also provide a habitat for forest birds such as the Pacific wren, and a food source for wildlife, such as mountain beavers. And in Seattle’s Seward Park, they are dying off at alarming rates. Nobody really knows why, but Program on the Environment lecturer Tim Billo and Seward Park steward Paul Shannon have some ideas, which they shared with King 5 News reporter Alison Morrow last Friday. 

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Student spotlight: Jasmmine Ramgotra uses art as a conduit for social change

For Jasmmine Ramgotra, dance is a way to engage with the community, and a means to express tough social and environmental issues we face in today’s society. She’s looking to shift the culture of dance away from abstraction, in order to lead the way for a more connected and inclusive tomorrow. Jasmmine recently received the honor of being named Miss Next Century by Future-ish, a creation of UW Sustainability’s Sean Schmidt. 

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Garden build project underway, in honor of Tikvah Weiner

From 2008 to 2013, Tikvah Weiner worked at the Program on the Environment, as a graduate program adviser and then administrator, and was a much beloved staff member who is remembered fondly for her positive and joyous spirit. This Spring, thanks to the generosity of donors to Tikvah’s Fund; the Campus Sustainability Fund; UW Landscape Architecture; UW Department of Urban Design & Planning; and UW Department of Facilities Maintenance & Construction, an outdoor learning and teaching space is under construction in honor of Tikvah. 

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Spring 2017 Capstone Symposium

The Program on the Environment will host our Spring 2017 Capstone Symposium on May 24 at Alder Hall Auditorium. We welcome all to attend and support students as they present on the culmination of three quarters of hard work. Topics include: achieving sustainability through behavior change and policy, environmental education in theory and practice, approaches for community engagement, and the link between art, technology and our relationship to nature. 

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Environmental Innovation Practicum - Register for Autumn

ENVIR 495 – Environmental Innovation Practicum 2 credits, Tuesdays 4-5:50 p.m. | Autumn Quarter 2017 ENTRE 443/543, ENGR 498A, ENVIR 495 (Soon to be ENGR 443, ENVIR 443) Is the doom and gloom of environmental problems weighing you down? Be part of the solution as a student in this course! Each weekly seminar will inspire you to make an impact as experts discuss the circular economy, water innovation, land use, greening the built environment, and more! 

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