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  News From the Rubenstein School   |   Spring 2017
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Dean's Message

Challenging Students to Become Leaders and Advocates for Public Trust in Science

Nancy MathewsHappy Spring to all of you! It is my pleasure to take a moment to reflect on significant events that have taken place at the Rubenstein School over the past several months. Last week, we celebrated the 47th anniversary of Earth Day and prepared to engage in two national level marches, one to support science (April 21) and the other to call attention to the reality of climate change (April 29). We are amidst unprecedented times when public trust in science is at a critical juncture and reliance on scientific evidence to inform decisions is under scrutiny. Our students will be challenged to decide for themselves what is fact and what is fiction in a world where the media is full of “fake news.” They will need to think critically and logically, navigate conflict and work across differences, while demonstrating empathy and compassion.

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Feature Stories

Gund Family Donates $6 Million to Create Institute for Environment at UVM

Gund familyA $6 million gift from the Gund family – with a challenge to raise even more from other donors – will create the University of Vermont’s first university-wide environmental institute. Designed to catalyze interdisciplinary research at UVM, the new initiative also will connect scholars with government, business and societal leaders to address urgent sustainability issues around the globe. The Gund Institute for Environment at UVM will be headquartered in Johnson House on UVM’s Burlington campus, replacing – and greatly enlarging the scope of – the internationally-renowned Gund Institute for Ecological Economics which the Gund family established in 2002.

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Ginny McGinn of Center for Whole Communities to Speak at Rubenstein School Commencement

Ginny McGinnGinny McGinn will be the speaker for the 2017 Rubenstein School Commencement Ceremony to be held Sunday, May 21. Ms. McGinn is the Executive Director of Center for Whole Communities, an organization, with offices in Burlington, that fosters inclusive communities, strongly rooted in place, where all people have a healthy relationship with the natural world.

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A Look Back on Associate Professor Deane Wang’s Leading Role in the Ecological Planning Curriculum

Deane Wang and FNEP studentsDeane Wang, Associate Professor in the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, will retire this spring after 28 years of service to the School and its students. He arrived at the University of Vermont in 1989. Deane has advised more than 75 Master's students using the Rubenstein School's Ecological Planning (EP) curriculum that was developed in the late 1990s.

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Wachusett Mountain Ski Area Co-Owner/Vice President Joins Rubenstein School Board of Advisors

Carolyn Crowley Stimpson and her brothersThe University of Vermont Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources welcomed a new member to the School community in January 2017. Carolyn Crowley Stimpson, Vice President of Resort Services at Wachusett Mountain Ski Area, has been appointed to the School’s Board of Advisors.

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Study: How Climate Change Threatens Mountaintops (and Clean Water)

mountainsMountains are far more than rocks. They also confer various natural benefits—for example, about half of the world’s drinking water filters through their high-elevation forests, plants, and soils. Now, a new, first-of-its kind study, in the journal Nature, shows how these mountain ecosystems around the globe may be threatened by climate change.

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Markowitz Appointed Visiting Professor in UVM's Rubenstein School

Deb MarkowitzThe University of Vermont Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources has appointed Deb Markowitz as a visiting professor, Nancy Mathews, dean of the school, announced today. Markowitz is the outgoing secretary of the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, a position she held since 2011. Prior to her role leading the agency, Markowitz served for 12 years as Vermont’s secretary of state.

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Rubenstein School and The Nature Conservancy Strengthen Partnership

Karla NoboaThe Vermont Chapter of The Nature Conservancy (TNC-VT) recognizes the expertise in the UVM Rubenstein School of the Environment and Natural Resources. The nonprofit has recently elected Rubensten School faculty members to its Board of Trustees and has integrated students into its operations.

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Student Invited by White House for Third Speaking Engagement on Climate Change

Gina FiorileWith her third invitation from the White House, UVM student Gina Fiorile returned to Washington, DC on December 5 as a Champion of Change for Climate Education and Literacy. She spoke as part of the Champions of Change Reunion held at the U.S. Department of Transportation Headquarters.

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move Mountains: The Campaign for the University of Vermont logo

As part of Move Mountains: The Campaign for The University of Vermont, we hope you will consider a gift dedicated to the Rubenstein School, so we can continue offering graduate fellowships, undergraduate scholarships, valuable student internships, and other key experiential learning opportunities for our students. Visit the UVM Foundation online giving page and specify "Rubenstein School Dean's Discretionary Fund" or another fund of your choice in the "other" box. The Rubenstein School community thanks you.

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