Goal: Empower a generation of Climate Champions across California, Mexico, and beyond with climate solutions education to transform society, fast track solutions and protect the vulnerable.
Climate change has morphed into climate disruption and is the existential crisis of our time. It is the most serious challenge that society is facing in this century.
We have to bend the global warming curve before it is too late.
Education for our generation is the most powerful tool for transforming society, to overcome climate inaction and empower a generation of scientifically-minded and civically-engaged Climate Champions.
We are an alliance of pioneering climate and social scientists, educators, digital platform creators, artists, and religious scholars in California and Mexico to lead a hemispheric cultural shift. We will adapt and massively scale California’s peer-reviewed, field-tested education protocol, Bending the Curve: Climate Change Solutions.
We will empower One Million Climate Champions from kindergarten to college level students, professionals working in city and state governments and climate nongovernmental organizations, and the general public. Our education tools combine the flipped classroom concept with experiential learning laboratories. Digital platforms, dedicated UC-TV Channel, summer immersive teacher training programs and MOOC certification will deliver education to millions. The focus will be climate solutions, adaptation and public health. As a gesture of urgent binational cooperation, and climate justice, we include migrant-dense communities at the US-Mexico border.
Together we can spark a cultural-shift across the Americas and the world.
WHO WE ARE
The effort is led by the University of California at San Diego (UCSD) and Centro Mario Molina, with a major contribution from the School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA. Partners include the John Muir Institute at UC Davis, the Department of Religious Studies at UC Irvine, the Evangelical Environmental Network, the Society for the Study of Christian Spirituality, Bethel University, and the UCSF Public Health Institute. At UC San Diego, 9 divisions and departments are working together: the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO-UCSD); the Center on Global Justice; CREATE (Center for Research on Educational Equity, Assessment & Teaching Excellence); the UCSD School of Medicine, UCSD Extension and the UC-TV; The UCSD Community Stations, CalIT2 (California Institute For Telecommunications and Information / Qualcomm Institute), the Department of Anthropology, the Global Health Program; COSMOS, the Department of Visual Arts and the Department of Music.
The dedicated team includes a Nobel Laureate, Pulitzer Prize author, Pope Francis' main advisor for Global Education Compact, two UN Champion of Earth awardees; Pulitzer Composer, MacArthur Fellow, a science advisor to Pope Francis’s Holy See delegation to the 2015 Paris summit, and Council members of the Pontifical Academy of sciences. Across our team, we have trained thousands of K-12 and college teachers and reached nearly a million students in dozens of major school districts and colleges across California and Mexico, and beyond. Centro Mario Molina in Mexico city has trained 17,000 teachers, and reached half a million students, with a goal to triple these numbers in expanded sites over the next 5 years. UC San Diego's CREATE has extensive experience in STEM-based K-12 curricular design, teacher professional development, research and evaluation, with a focus on educational innovation and equity in districts and schools that serve low-income communities of color. Birch Aquarium at Scripps engages K-12 students and the general public through experiential learning that connects scientific understanding with actions to protect our planet. UCLA’s School of Education and Information Studies is a global visionary focused on diversity and social equity in 21st century K-12 education. They have unmatched capacity for equitable educational innovation, and vast networks to disseminate these innovations across the world.
UC San Diego is also host to the UCSD Community Stations, a network of sites located in diverse, underserved communities across the border region, designed for cross-sector educational partnerships between universities, school districts, and community-based nonprofits. Embracing a mentorship model that pairs undergraduate students with local youth, the Community Stations promote access to higher education, and active hands-on learning beyond the four-walls of the school, with an emphasis on climate change and related environmental challenges across the border region. They are an ideal cross-border infrastructure for developing learning laboratories, where K-12 and college students can apply classroom knowledge about climate solutions in real-world contexts. Engaging the local communities, students can learn to address critical issues, including problems of human health, disability and equity that may arise in the context of current and pending climate crises.
We bring our experiences, partners and networks with us, to propel change. Our team is the best in the world at what we do. This includes expertise in rigorous monitoring and iterative evaluation of our immersive programs within the communities we serve. Within this monitoring and evaluation, we emphasize a health focus especially mental health and wellbeing, sampled both quantitatively and using qualitative ethnography. That we can empower the mindsets of the communities we work with to generate sustainable & effective climate change solutions, is an important metric of success for our project, signifying societal transformation. We have public and private relationships, local and global, from the top-down to the bottom-up. We work at the highest levels of educational decision-making in California, Mexico and beyond. And we work with grass-roots networks to mobilize change on the ground.
IN THE NEWS
M. Suárez-Orozco and V. Ram Ramanathan
Phi Delta Kappa | 12 November 2019
Los Angeles Times | 23 December 2019
Environmental and Climate Change Literacy Project and Summit at UCLA Aims to Advance Teaching and Learning About the Climate Crisis and Its Solutions in California
UCLA | 11 December 2019
MARCELO SUÁREZ-OROZCO AND V. RAMANATHAN
The Hill | 26 September 2019
Ed Source | 12 December 2019
Jonathan Van Dyke
UCLA Newsroom | 16 December 2019
Assistant Dean, Professional and Continuing Education
Director, Digital Learning
UC San Diego
Technical Assistant and Climate Change Education Coordinator
Director of the John Muir Institute of the Environment
Pulitzer Prize Author
Department of Theology | Sustainability Studies
NSF Border Solutions Alliance | Bioregional Center
Senior Director of Learning
Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography
Groundwork San Diego
Pulitzer Prize Composer
Center on Global Justice, UCSD