As a society we face great challenges meeting the needs of our growing population while maintaining the health of our environment and working toward social and economic equality. The Center is founded in the belief that these challenges are actually opportunities for a college with strong academic departments, passionate students, in a progressive community rich with expertise, namely SBCC.
Our Mission is to initiate and support sustainability on our campus, in our curriculum, and in our community.
We take advantage of every opportunity to involve students in achieving our mission so that we simultaneously design better systems and train students for a rapidly evolving future.
The concept of sustainability “meeting our needs without hindering the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (Brundtland Commission 1997) is truly interdisciplinary, requiring integration of the many academic disciplines, college departments, community organizations, and public offices. As such, the pursuit of sustainability education will enrich our many existing offerings and add new opportunities for students to gain value added skills in the many emerging fields that are incorporating environmental and social responsibility. One goal of this project is to incorporate ecological thinking into the many disciplines we offer on campus. In doing so, we will be working toward solutions to our many challenges and teaching students how a holistic, integrated approach can not only incorporate environmental and social responsibility, but create economic success through increased efficiency, preservation of necessary ecosystem functions, greater ease of regulatory compliance, and creation of niches in an evolving market place.
The Center for Sustainability is the continuation of a collaborative effort among Continuing Education led by Kris Power, several community organizations, The Environmental Studies program, the Student Sustainability Coalition, and several staff members of SBCC. Education in environmental and social responsibility has long been a focus of SBCC and the surrounding community. Several years ago the Student Sustainability Coalition was started by a few passionate students looking to make a positive change. These students provided support to those at SBCC that were already working in this regard and together we accomplished a number of successful projects. With the well documented challenges we face, growing student support, clear educational opportunities, and strong community foundation the college saw this as an opportunity to develop a distinctive program that would offer students a solutions based education by incorporating education in sustainable practices into existing curriculum, undertaking real world projects to make the campus more sustainable, and forging further ties with the surrounding community.
Adam Green, Ph.D. – Director
The Environmental Studies Program Coordinator at SBCC, Adam is an ecologist by training with bachelor’s degrees in chemistry and wildlife biology from University of California-Davis, and graduate degrees in wildlife ecology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Adam currently teaches courses in Humans and the Biological Environment, Environmental Field Studies, Projects in Sustainability, and General Biology. Adam has a design certificate for permaculture (2007) from the Regenertive Design Institute with Penny Livingston, Brock Dolman, and Geoff Lawton.
photo credit: Lou Fontana
Margie Bushman – Coordinator
In 1997 Margie took a design course with Australian biologist and founder of Permaculture, Bill Mollison, and nothing was ever the same. She came home to do community organizing with Wes Roe, organizing and facilitating the South Coast Permaculture Guild, and later co-founding the Santa Barbara Permaculture Network, an educational non-profit dedicated to permeating the community with knowledge about sustainability and permaculture. A member of the Santa Barbara Environmental Education Coalition (SBEEC) Margie helped develop programs in collaboration with SBCC Adult Education and Santa Barbara City College Environmental Studies department. For five years Margie was editor for the Santa Barbara edition of Hopedance Magazine, helping to build community through the media. She serves on the Board of Quail Springs Learning Oasis & Permaculture Farm, and helped convene the first Southern California Permaculture Convergence in August 2009. Margie is on the official support Committee for the International Permaculture Convergences (IPC’s), held most recently in Brazil, and next year in Malawi Africa.
Holder of 2 design certificates for Permaculture with Bill Mollison (1997) & Geoff Lawton (2008). Received a Permaculture Teacher’s Certificate in 2001.
School Gardens’ Staff, Cultivating the Future
Trish Stone-Damen – Program Manager
A former biology teacher, Trish became increasingly interested in organic food production for her family’s well being and that of the community. She returned to education (following a career in law) rekindled by volunteering with the School Gardens Program at her daughter’s school.
Ramsey Charles Cronk- Program Coordinator
As a landscaper, Ramsey was inspired to focus on installing backyard food gardens and school gardens in Oakland, CA. which then led him to the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems Apprenticeship program at UCSC.
Lauren Danner- Garden Educator/Manager (GEM) Coordinator
A traveling field biologist for almost a decade in Hawaii and the Channel Islands, Lauren found a connection to agriculture with the local food movement on the Central Coast. She joined the team as a GEM in 2010 and is now excited to utilize her communications skills and love of team dynamics in her new role as Program Coordinator.
NikiAnne Feinberg- Consultant (Former Program Manager)
NikiAnne has chosen to make her home in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. As a founding manager, NikiAnne’s future involvement with the program will be to advise on program management and visioning as needed.
This section is under construction.