How does it feel to be a Sustainability Ambassador? Hear from the 2019/20 Sustainability Ambassadors – what’s important to them, what they hope to achieve from their experience, and what they’ve gained from taking part.

Ambassador bios

Aidan Haigh
Environment and Sustainability, Geography Major, Faculty of Arts

I am grateful to have been raised by environmentalist parents in an off the grid solar-powered hemp-bale house on Salt Spring Island, BC. This has helped shape my perspective on our individual and societal responsibility now and into the future. I now find myself majoring in Environmental and Sustainable Geography. I hope to continue learning and living sustainably.

Divija Madhani
International Relations and Sociology Major, Faculty of Arts

As a fourth year Bachelor of Arts student double majoring in International Relations and Sociology, I am interested in sustainability research, data analysis, and policy work. As a Sustainability Ambassador, I want to build public knowledge and awareness surrounding sustainability and related issues, facilitate greater public access to elements of sustainable living, and improve the visibility of Asian Indian women and other minority groups in sustainability scholarship and activism. In my down time, I enjoy singing, arts and crafts, and cooking!

Ethan Elliot 
Environment and Sustainability, Geography Major, Faculty of Arts
 

Gideon Odionu
Allard School of Law
 

Ian Garvie
Environmental Engineering Major, Faculty of Applied Sciences

I was raised in Sacramento, California.  After becoming obsessed with Star Trek as a toddler (and to this day), I found a love for science, engineering, and exploring the unknown, which eventually led to my current passion for sustainable energy. From my education in the International Baccalaureate Programme, I wanted to pursue higher education outside of the US, which led me to the joint Environmental Engineering program at UNBC and UBC.  I also found a love of academic conferences, including organizing the first ever Conference on Sustainability in Engineering, and from there I became inspired to become a sustainability advocate!  In my free time, I enjoy playing games with friends, watching Netflix, and reading philosophy outside.

Isabella Montecalvo
Human Geography Major, Faculty of Arts

I was lucky enough to grow up around the world. I got to see so many cultures and places and people which only made me more certain about the uniqueness of our planet and the need to preserve it. Through the Sustainability Ambassadors program, I hope to instill this appreciation in the UBC community and to guide them towards more sustainable behaviors and ultimately a more sustainable future. I am so excited to be a Sustainability Ambassador this year and I am privileged to have a role in making this change.

Jacqueline Neufeld
International Relations Major, Faculty of Arts
 

Jade Yeung 
Bachelor of Commerce Major, Sauder School of Business

I’m a second year Sauder student hoping to learn more about social entrepreneurship and sustainable business practices. Growing up, climate change was never something I thought about outside of the classroom until I came to UBC. Being surrounded by professors and students who took the time to delve deeper into these topics, attending climate strikes to push for more environmental action, and taking the time to be more mindful about my own carbon footprint has sparked my passion for environmental sustainability and expressing that passion to those around me as well.

Jason Adle
Geography Major, Faculty of Arts

Hello! My name is Jason and I'm in my fifth and final year here at UBC studying human geography and urban studies. I have a keen interest in promoting sustainability in urban environments and creating better places for people. Outside of my studies, I love exploring all Vancouver has, both within nature and within the city and its neighbourhoods.

Joshua Jamora
Environment and Sustainability, Geography Major, Faculty of Arts

Growing up across places marked by diversity – Winnipeg, Davao City, Vancouver, HMCS Acadia – I am a witness to various ways of life. Because of this, I know that there can be no one size fits all approach to sustainability; the way any community or person can act sustainably is informed by changing circumstances and the complex, interconnected systems that surround them. As a Sustainability Ambassador, I hope to uplift diverse perspectives and help create spaces that expand the accessibility, reach, and understanding of sustainability to people of all walks of life.

What can sustainability mean to you and your community?

Julie Hui
Bachelor of Commerce Major, Faculty of Commerce

I was born in Ontario but since my parents are both from Hong Kong, I consider Hong Kong to be a second home to me. Having the opportunity to see the world allowed me to value the beauty of the environment and seek out new ways to preserve it. To me, sustainability means actively advocating for a greener future, challenging ourselves to find innovative solutions to push the environmental movement forward, and integrating environmentally-conscientious practices into everyday life and I hope to be able to work towards spreading that message.

Justin Kung
Bachelor of Commerce Major, Faculty of Commerce

As a Vancouver-raised city kid, I never took notice of how important sustainable systems are, not just to the natural ecosystems that I am surrounded by, but the city I live in as well. I'm passionate about applying my skills as a creative person to sustainability initiatives in the community that raised me while also learning how I can better my lifestyle in an eco-conscious way. I'm also a sucker for jazz music and Fantastic Mr. Fox.

Kaitlyn Ho
Accounting Major, Faculty of Commerce

I'm a fifth year business student and social entrepreneur who is passionate about human rights and environmental activism. I'm the founder of an online publication called Attire Media, which empowers consumers to make more ethical and sustainable fashion choices, and I run a newsletter called The Daily Activist, which sends out 3 daily activism actions that everyday citizens can do to make a positive impact. I strongly believe in our ability, as consumers, investors, and citizens, to create a more ethical, equitable, and sustainable world.

Lauren Moody
Undeclared Major, Faculty of Science

Ever since I can remember, I have cared deeply for the environment and its many at-risk inhabitants (including us humans!). What began as a childhood love for wild cats has evolved into a passion for sustainable development, in particular the interrelationships between different sectors and stakeholders. By exploring environmental sciences in my studies and building and leveraging my network in activism, I hope to create change in my daily life and in my community as a Sustainability Ambassador. I also strive to find balance in my life, and enjoy skiing, running, cooking plant-based meals and playing field hockey.

Madeline Woodley
Natural Resource Conservation Major, Faculty of Forestry

I owe much of my environmental awareness to the community and home I was raised in; growing up on one of B.C.'s southern gulf islands, in an off the grid home, the importance of the natural world and the need to protect it were deeply engrained in me from a young age. I spent many summers working on a local seed-saving farm learning about the important role food has to play in creating a sustainable future. When not studying conservation, I can be found combing beaches, hiking through forests, or curled up with tea and a book!

Nika Martinussen
Engineering Major, Faculty of Applied Sciences

I am a settler who grew up in Winnipeg, Manitoba, in Treaty One Territory. The duty to be a good steward of the earth was instilled in me at a young age by my late grandmother; however, my true understanding of the intersectionality of sustainability, the interconnectedness of environmental and social justice, came throughout my public school education, where I had the privilege of meeting and working with Indigenous knowledge keepers and leaders. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to collaborate with the 2020-2021 cohort of Sustainability Ambassadors to further our pursuit of reconciliation with all of our relations.

Ralph Evan Hao
Political Science and Philosophy Major (Urban Studies Minor), Faculty of Arts

I grew up here on the Pacific west coast of Canada and was born in Manila on a Pacific island, but between them, there is definitely a vast difference in approaching sustainability objectives. The growing coverage during the 2010s for environmental change quickly exposed me to this passion. What really inspired me was observing the reality of the human lifestyle, namely how we package and throw away our food, and other factors in our everyday life that have long-term impacts. I look forward to collaborating with the Sustainability Ambassadors to tackle issues we are currently facing such as food waste, water use, and important ethical questions surrounding how to properly co-exist with the environment.

Sadhri Kumar
Food, Nutrition and Health Major, Faculty of Land and Food Systems

I am a food and nutrition nerd from my head to-ma-toes! I enjoy cooking and learning about food from different cuisines around the world. As I pursue a degree in Food, Nutrition, and Health in the Faculty of Land and Food Systems at UBC, I look forward to learning about how the food we eat impacts our planet, economy, and health and what we can do to create more sustainable food systems.

Samuel Shin
Experimental Medicine Major, Faculty of Medicine

During my undergrad, I was surprised to learn that the way people define sustainability and address environmental issues varied quite a bit depending on their background. I was extremely fortunate to be raised in Vancouver, where I was taught to cherish nature above all and promote conservation rather than construction. However, as I ventured out to other cities and interacted with people from different countries and cultures through community volunteering, I quickly realized that the word “sustainability” has multiple definitions based on one’s education, occupation and life experience. As a Sustainability Ambassador, I hope to listen to the community on their opinions on sustainable living and discuss how we, as a society, can incorporate this thoughtfully to local projects and environmental issues.

Sarisa Choy
Bachelor of Commerce Major, Faculty of Commerce

Growing up in Honolulu, Hawaii, I've always been exposed to nature and learned, early on, the importance of preserving it. Whether it’s going to the beach or going on a hike, I always try to get out and enjoy the scenery. Beginning in high school, I wanted to get involved in activities, so I participated in stream cleanups, sustainability workshops, and helped organize an Earth Day cleanup for my high school. After coming to UBC, I joined the Sustainability Ambassador program to expand my knowledge and continue pursing my passion for sustainability and the environment.

Shane Hunt
Urban Forestry Major, Faculty of Forestry

Shruti Sridhar
Natural Resource Conservation Major, Faculty of Forestry

I am a third year forestry student, majoring in Natural Resources Conservation. I am passionate about green businesses and communities, land management and sustainable food systems. My personal goal is to build a global community that works for and with nature.

Vanessa Hsu
Operations and Logistics Major, Faculty of Commerce

I'm a fourth year Commerce student at UBC, and am passionate about sports and traveling. As a Sustainability Ambassador, I'd like to formulate well-rounded connections between my studies, hobbies, and sustainability, to be a sustainable contributor to the things I love.

Vanshika Jotsinghani
Bachelor of International Economics Major, Faculty of Arts