One of my greatest passions is the environment. I firmly believe that one cannot accurately say that they are an environmentalist if they do not support the search for environmental justice. The environment encompasses all people and every person, regardless of race or socioeconomic status, deserves equal access to a clean, healthy environment. With that being said, it was an honor to work at Nobis Project this summer and take part in raising the profile of environmental justice within the greater social justice movement. Though I came into my internship with background knowledge of environmental injustice issues, I learned so much more through research and discussions with topic experts. Now, more than ever, I am certain that my future career path will include the fight for people experiencing environmental injustices. Hopefully, I will be an environmental lawyer one day, defending nature and all who reside in it.
Though I will not have a formal DukeEngage program to structure my service work, I have already taken the initiative to make sure that I maintain my presence in the environmental justice field in this upcoming academic year. I applied and was selected to be a Vote Earth Organizer Intern for Duke University through the Earth Day Network. This position seeks to encourage young people, specifically college students, to register to vote and commit to voting for politicians that support the Earth and green policies. The goal of this campaign is to elect politicians that are dedicated to achieving environmental equity for all communities. While this campaign program has structure to it, one obstacle that I may face is discouragement. Tabling on campus and getting students to take the time out of their busy days to hear you out can be hard. To try and mitigate this issue, I will make sure that I communicate with both my supervisors and fellow Vote Earth Organizer Interns to voice any concerns or problems that I’m experiencing. From there, I can likely get support and any advice that I need to both be successful in my job and keep pushing for the cause.