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  News From the Rubenstein School   |   Fall 2016
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Dean's Message

The Way Forward: The Rubenstein School Leads in a Way that Brings Out the Best in People

Nancy Mathews"Lead in a way that brings out the best in people." Echoing the words of Victor Wooten, our Spring 2016 Commencement speaker, I open this newsletter with a revitalized spirit of engagement and empowerment: I encourage our students, staff, faculty, and friends to reaffirm our commitment to the environment and to the well-being of all people. This is the concept that will guide the Rubenstein School, today and in the future. Working collaboratively with others and across differences is the best way to ensure the health of our environment and the well-being of all people. While the longer term impacts of the recent elections have yet to be felt, it is clear that our School must redouble its focus on the values and vision that have sustained us and made us one of the leaders in environmental education.

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Feature Stories

Birding to Change the World

Birding with college instructor, students & elementary school childrenProfessor Trish O’Kane’s new course, “Birding to Change the World,” began far from Derway Island in the north end Burlington, where, on an autumn afternoon, her class of UVM students tromps through a floodplain forest with a crew of kids from nearby JJ Flynn Elementary.

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Study: Elephant Poaching Costs Africa $25 Million Per Year in Lost Tourism

ElephantIn Africa, tens of thousands of elephants are killed by poachers each year. Now a new study shows that this poaching crisis costs African countries around $25 million annually in lost tourism revenue. The research was published November 1 in the journal Nature Communications. “Conservation is often seen as a luxury,” says Brendan Fisher an economist at the University of Vermont who co-led the new study, “but our work shows that it pays big to protect elephants.”

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Global Change Ecologist Nathan Sanders to Lead UVM Environmental Program

Nate SandersThe University of Vermont Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources has named Dr. Nathan J. Sanders, professor at the University of Copenhagen and Head of the Biodiversity Section, as the new director of the UVM Environmental Program. He will oversee the University’s environmental studies major housed within three campus units: the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, and the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources.

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Adrian Ivakhiv to Advance Environmental Arts at UVM as Steven Rubenstein Professor

Adrian IvakhivProfessor Adrian Ivakhiv has been named the second Steven Rubenstein Professor for Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Vermont. The three-year appointment, beginning September 1, 2016, in the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources will enable Professor Ivakhiv to develop the foundations for a proposed UVM center in eco-arts, media, and culture.

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Jon Erickson to Lead Climate Action Research as Blittersdorf Professor

Jon EricksonProfessor Jon D. Erickson has been named the Blittersdorf Professor of Sustainability Science and Policy at the University of Vermont effective September 2016. The appointment in the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources will enable Professor Erickson to pursue research on the renewable energy transition and climate action planning for the state and university.

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Dr. Aimée Classen Joins UVM Rubenstein School as Associate Professor of Environmental Sciences Focusing on Ecology of Global Change

Aimee ClassenDr. Aimée T. Classen will join the University of Vermont Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources as Associate Professor of Environmental Sciences. Dr. Classen is currently an associate professor at the Natural History Museum at the University of Copenhagen. Her UVM tenure begins January 2017.

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Rubenstein School Grad Student Receives Award from UVM & Casella Resource Solutions Partnership

Brendan O'BrienThis fall, Brendan O’Brien, MS student in UVM’s Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, began a three-semester internship supported by a $15,000 award from Casella Resource Solutions to conduct his research on soil amendment products produced through organics recycling strategies. His work is well-timed with new Vermont requirements for residents and businesses to separate food scraps and other common waste materials (e.g. “blue bin” recyclables and leaf and yard debris) from landfilled trash.

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Andy Rubenstein and Tom Berry Join Rubenstein School Board of Advisors

Andy Rubenstein and Tom BerryThe Rubenstein School welcomes Andrew Rubenstein, benefactor of the Rubenstein School, and Thomas Berry, advisor to Vermont U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy, as two of the newest members of the Rubenstein School Board of Advisors.

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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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