Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 52.40
Liaison Mary Fischer
Submission Date Feb. 17, 2013
Executive Letter Download

STARS v1.2

Brandeis University
ER-12: Sustainability Immersive Experience

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Dan Perlman
Associate Provost
Office of the Provost
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution offer a program that meets the criteria for this credit?:

A brief description of the sustainability-focused immersive experience(s) offered by the institution:

Currently there are two sustainability immersive experiences offered to Brandeis students:

1) Justice Brandeis Semester in Environmental Health and Justice: In this hands-on, multi-disciplinary, community-engaged learning program, students will become deeply immersed in the law, policy, social impacts and science of current environmental health issues challenging individuals, families and communities today.

The focus will be on low-income, diverse populations as we examine issues at the juncture of environmental challenges and social justice - toxic exposures in food, soils, air and water disproportionately affecting low income communities; decisions about location of hazardous waste facilities; access to environmentally safe and affordable housing and others.

Along with strong grounding in the course material, students will spend much of the time in the field and in the community, acquiring real skills for real needs to engage in these issues first-hand: Legal training, negotiation, advocacy, client interviewing and counseling, environmental field monitoring and assessment, sampling methodology and analysis and more.

Throughout the JBS program, students will collaborate directly with community organizations and government agencies to tackle environmental health problems facing low-income residents in the Waltham and Greater Boston community.

2) Environmental Field Semester: The Environmental Field Semester is an integrated four-course offering from the Environmental Studies Program. About 12 students enroll in a roster of courses that have been configured to be team-taught in a single, coherent semester-long program that includes major blocks of guided field research.

These courses are "Field Biology" with Dan Perlman, "Food and Farming in America" with Brian Donahue, and the double-credit "Geographic Information Systems and Field Methods: The New England Landscape" with Dan Perlman and Brian Donahue. All of these course credits count toward the Environmental Studies major. The EFS was offered for the first time in the fall of 2007.

The EFS gives students intensive experience in the conservation and stewardship of land, using Waltham, Weston and other local communities as our living laboratory. In the process, students will gain an in-depth understanding of the history, ecology, laws and politics behind how land is used. They will also begin to master research, writing, Geographic Information System (GIS), presentation and management skills that make for effective environmental protection and sustainable engagement, at the local community level.

The website URL where information about the immersive experience is available:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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