HSL Seminar - Brandon Lechinsky (Tuesday, 4/27, 4-5p)

Title:  EarthDNA Ambassadors: Connecting leaders, empowering students, and engaging the world on climate

Speaker:  Brandon Leshchinskiy


Climate change is the challenge of our time. It is global, slow-moving, and impersonal – yet it has already impacted everyone from California to Kuwait. Humans are ill-adapted to this type of problem, as the scale – both in time and space – is too large to spur action. But inaction, comfortable as it may seem, poses a catastrophic threat to humanity. To address climate change, we must make it meaningful and relevant to the public.

In this talk, I discuss the development of EarthDNA Ambassadors, a community that addresses climate change by connecting leaders, empowering students, and engaging the world on climate. According to survey results, the Ambassadors training program not only improves participants’ negotiation and communication skills, but also improves their mindset with respect to learning leadership. Furthermore, EarthDNA’s Climate 101 workshop improves climate literacy, and although long-lasting change is unlikely to happen after one session, Climate 101 creates a privileged moment in which participants are more likely to increase their involvement in climate activism.

Ultimately, climate change requires a full-scale mobilization. That means both technical and adaptive work: new technologies and policies, yes, but also new ways of looking at the world and interacting with nature. Recovering from our climate crisis hinges on progress in other complementary areas: inequity, polarization, and institutional backsliding. While this dependency may seem daunting, it also presents an opportunity. Climate change demands that we address many of the world’s most pressing issues – and it will take all of us to succeed.

For the Zoom link, contact Liz Zotos.