seeking suggestions for student-focused keynote speaker

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5 replies [Last post]
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AASHE Member
Joined: Jan 5 2011

Johnson County Community College is organizing a regional student sustainability conference this fall. The idea is to have students presenting and talking to students as much as possible, and therefore I am looking for ideas for an energetic and inspiring, preferably young-ish, keynote speaker, who is also capable of covering the breadth of sustainability for a crowd who may or may not be versed in all the issues. Roots or connections to the Midwest/Kansas region a bonus, but not necessary.

Would appreciate any suggestions!

pmoody@stlcc.edu's picture
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AASHE Member
Joined: Dec 23 2008

Hi Kim, I have a student I can recommend from St. Louis Community College at Meramec--Abdul-Kariem Matteuzzi amatteuzzi1@my.stlcc.edu
He was instrumental in helping the Meramec Green Team on several projects--Earth Day Celebration and a Clothing Exchange during RecycleMania. He's a go-getter, doing research for the district (STLCC) on "green" power strips and other energy saving strategies. He works well with student organizations as well as faculty and staff on the Green Team and Student Services. I have also put the word out to M-SEC--the Missouri student sustainability network. There may be other good candidates that pop out of that.

Good luck!

Peggy

ashwini.srinivasamohan@aashe.org's picture
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StaffAASHE Member
Joined: Mar 21 2011

Hi Kim,

I would also recommend looking through the past winners of the Student Sustainability Leadership Award as well as the Student Research on Campus Sustainability Award pages on the AASHE website. There are descriptions of the projects and contact info of the students available as well. Although the research topics / submissions may seem too niche at first blush for your purposes, you could write people that seem like qualified candidates to gauge their experience with public speaking on sustainability issues writ large.

Having students that have been published and nationally praised on their efforts with sustainability could be a good frame for the conference!

My best,
Ashwini

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AASHE Member
Joined: Dec 23 2008

Kim--

I'm definitely not young, but as the author of The Nature of College: How a New Understanding of Campus Culture Can Change the World, I'm a likely speaker for a conference like this. For more information, see the website at www.natureofcollege.org.

Best,

Jim Farrell

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AASHE Member
Joined: Apr 19 2010

Hello,

I recommend Timothy Denherder-Thomas, he is a recent college grad (2009) from Macalester College in Minnesota. He is Co-founder of Grand Aspirations. I've seen him speak twice. He is motivating, makes links between various sustainability issues, is youthful, and has accomplished many amazing things as a youth which makes him inspiring.

Grand Aspirations vision statement is:
Grand Aspirations empowers, connects, and supports youth leaders as they create innovative, self-sustaining, and inter-dependent initiatives that systemically integrate climate and energy solutions, economic security, and social justice.

You can read more about Timothy at these two links and contact him through Facebook.

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/timothy-denherder-thomas/5/96/849
http://www.facebook.com/people/Timothy-Den-Herder-Thomas/19402380

Good Luck finding a speaker!

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AASHE Member
Joined: Apr 19 2010

Hi Kim and Jim,

I just recommended Timothy DenHerder-Thomas, but to be honest the first person that came to mind was Jim Farrell. I didn't realize that he had already posted on here. I would highly recommend Jim as he has done several presenations for our institution and is truly one of the most engaging speakers I've ever heard speak on sustainbility issues. I've seen individuals who are not even interested in environmental issues, hang on his every word. Although not a youth himself he has a unique way of connecting with young people that is captivating. I'd recommend Jim above Timothy.