A new partnership with Erol and NextWorld Philanthropies will build on Energy2028, Middlebury’s hallmark climate-action plan, and lay the groundwork for educating the next generation of transformative leaders. Energy2028 has as one of its core principles a commitment to integrating environmental literacy into the curriculum; since 2019, faculty, students, and staff have been leading the way.
Many Middlebury alums have carried a commitment to sustainability directly into their professions—often with national and international impact.
- How have they been working on the frontlines to achieve a more just, sustainable future? - What are their thoughts on tackling some of the world’s most pressing crises? - How did they get from Middlebury to where they are today? - What can we learn from their achievements, efforts, and setbacks?
This lecture series brings Midd alums back to campus to discuss these issues and more. Each event will be moderated by students.
The Sustainability Solutions Lab interns presented their final projects in August at the Kirk Center in front of faculty and staff advisors who guided them through research and implementation phases.
Some projects were new while others advanced existing initiatives aimed at helping Middlebury meet its long-term sustainability goals. Past SSL interns have been instrumental in the creation and evolution of Energy2028, greening of athletics, advancing sustainability abroad, sustainable design and construction, sustainable living, and an on-campus student consultancy—127 projects in total since 2017.
Middlebury’s new Energy2028 plan builds on a history of thinking holistically about sustainability. In 2007, then-President Ron Liebowitz signed the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment, and the campus achieved carbon neutrality within ten years - a story shared in this video. The college has won numerous awards for its integrated approach to sustainability, including campus operations and curriculum. The new integrated plan also includes ambitious targets for using the college endowment’s investment strategy to fight climate change.
Ayana Elizabeth Johnson delivered the commencement address at Middlebury College with wisdom and encouragement for graduates to “be tenacious on behalf of life on earth” and recognize that “every job can be a climate job.”
Students and faculty gathered in Bicentennial Hall to listen to authors Ibrahim Abdul-Matin and Rhamis Kent discuss an Islamic solution for climate change on May 3. The event was co-sponsored by Faithfully Sustainable, Muslim Student Association (MSA), the Climate Action Capacity Project and Environmental Affairs committee, the Charles P. Scott Center for Spiritual and Religious Life and the New Perennials Project.
Sustainability Solutions Lab interns Dira Mahmud ‘25 and Pearl Tulay ‘24 presented to students, faculty, staff, and the public at the Spring Symposium. Pearl and Dira presented an original poster in collaboration with their advisors Jack Byrne and Tara Federoff which showcased the many facets of Middlebury College’s Energy 2028 initiative and increased visibility and awareness of the initiative to the wider Middlebury College community.
Would you dance through the night in the apocalypse? What would it be like to eat your last tomato? Why would you bring kids into a world without adequate food and water? Could the end of days bring out the worst in you? These are just some of the questions posed by Marisela Treviño Orta’s “Somewhere,” directed by Assistant Professor of Theatre Olga Sanchez Saltveit, which premiered April 6 in the MAC. The play was part of a larger series of events spanning two separate weeks entitled “Art vs. the Apocalypse,” in which the Franklin Environmental Center invited a variety of artists, professors and students to share with the community what role the arts have in raising awareness about climate change.
In fall of 2022, Professor Julia Berazneva’s Climate Change Economics class (ECON 0365) put out a survey about attitudes on campus towards climate change and potential policies the school could adopt. The survey had 1,265 total respondents including 350 faculty and staff members.
Middlebury joins hundreds of educational institutions around the world (in more than 50 countries and most US states) in the World Wide Teach-In on Climate and Justice on and around March 29, 2023. This will continue ongoing campus-wide conversations and engage students, faculty, and staff as we grapple with a time of planetary crisis and transformation.