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New First-year Interest Group (FIG): Mentoring for Justice & Sustainability

New First-year Interest Group (FIG): Mentoring for Justice & Sustainability

Our new FIG combines the areas of College Access Education, Diversity & Social Justice and Sustainability and works with WWU Huxley College of the Environment (Huxley), Compass 2 Campus (C2C), North Cascades Institute Mountain School (NCI-MS), Centennial Elementary School (CES) and Blaine Elementary School (BES). Synergistic courses like this are the way and meet the needs of our combined future. According to a 2014 Presidential report, “In 1990, the U.S. ranked first in the world in four-year degree attainment among 25-34 year olds; today, the U.S. ranks 12th. While half of all people from high-income families have a bachelor’s degree, just 1 in 10 people from low-income families do.”

Meanwhile, the journal Nature reports, “Human activities are pushing Earth toward a “tipping point” that could cause sudden, irreversible changes in relatively stable conditions that have allowed civilization to flourish.” We cannot continue on with business and education as usual. I believe that we need to involve all whose families work within our borders (documented or not) in the conversation about access to higher education and global climate change. As part of my research for this service project, I realized that many children in the populations we serve do not even have a flat surface available for doing their homework. Also, the classrooms lack basic amenities such as an updated large world map and supplementary books to enhance individual lessons. Our service project will provide new information and connections necessary for America’s strong future as well as providing each student with a lap desk and each classroom with $220 to spend on their specific needs.

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