Climate Change Knows No Borders

Photo Credit: Sally McCormack Tutt

“The earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth.  All things are connected like the blood that unites us all.  Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it.  Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.”  Chief Seattle

One of the student engagement activities that UNE North organized during April, Earth Month, was an educational session to engage students and faculty in discussions about climate change in the Arctic region and how that is impacting Maine, the North Atlantic region, as well as the rest of the world. Climate change truly does not know state lines, country borders, or other barriers. The impact of climate change on one region of the world has a significant impact on other regions near and far.

Students and faculty across all of UNE’s five colleges were invited to participate in a two-hour active learning session that provided a platform for learning, discussion, and sharing of experiences and ideas about climate change.  The primary focus was on how climate change in the Arctic Region impacts ocean and human health. Over 45 participants were assigned to tables, placing them in a group with individuals across different majors and professions. This arrangement was intentional to encourage interprofessional/interdisciplinary thinking about the issues and potential solutions related to climate change.  They learned from, and with, each other about some of the major climate change issues in the Arctic Region and how they are impacting the area around us at UNE and the North Atlantic region.  The participants also discussed ways they can be a part of a change to improve things for future generations.  Robust discussions lead to learning, new friendships and collaborations, and an appreciation for our potential to make meaningful changes by working together.  The level of engagement during this session was inspiring and demonstrated how passionate the UNE community is about wanting to know more and be a part of the change we need to see happen.  Happy Earth Month!

Photo Credit: Abby Tasca

 “You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you.  What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.”

Jane Goodall