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Office of Sustainability Former Interns

Katy Evenson: Sustainability Events Intern

Majors: Psychology and Studio Art, Minor: Spanish

Sustainability means quite a lot to me; I grew up always having a large garden, line-drying our family's clothes and keeping a very large compost bin, and never thought for a second that any of these things were strange or something that we shouldn't be doing. This lifestyle of my childhood has carried over into how I think about ecology and conservation today; that sustainability is something that is lived every day, not just at our convenience. It’s important that we leave this planet as good or better than when we got here.

I’m interested in cooking, baking, knitting, learning new things and thoughtful citizenship of my community (globally and locally).



Katie Hosch: Engagement and Data Intern

Majors: Environmental Sciences and Environmental Studies also minoring in Chemistry

Sustainability, for humans, is the practice of sustainable living, allowing resources (rather than problems) to be passed onto our future generations. Personally, I try to bike as many places as I can, buying and eating many local foods, and conserving both electricity and water throughout my day.

I enjoy reading, swimming, watching sports and cooking.




Kyle Klausing: Community Climate Education Intern

Majors: History, Spanish, and Latin American Area Studies

Sustainability is the capacity of individuals and communities to combine both a high quality of life that endures for future generations with a respect for our natural environment and the resources it contains. While things like energy conservation and organic gardening are important facets of sustainability, I believe that sustainability as both a concept and a practice is something much larger. It involves a wide array of people and institutions engaged in everything from community composting to developing more efficient batteries for wind turbines. It's exciting to be a part of this effort!

I enjoy reading, biking, and conversation with friends.



Nkaujcoob Vang: Communications Intern

Major(s): Management and French Minor

To be able to live in balance with the environment, people, and other species without having to create consequences for future generations: that is what sustainability is to me. Though the concept is still new to me, I am honored to be a part of a great cause, learning about new ways of being sustainable and helping others become aware of these sorts of things! I hope to help pass along the knowledge so that people can too incorporate a sustainable method of living.

I enjoy being with family and friends, listening to music, watching a good series, trying out new things.



Ashleigh Cimino: Alumni Engagement intern

Major(s): Global Business with a Minor in Italian

I believe sustainability is important because it means taking responsibility for the way human life has affected the Earth. Today we have opportunities to use renewable energy to preserve our natural resources, and I am proud to be part of a campus that does this and makes sustainability one of its top priorities. Personally I am passionate about sustainability because I want to inspire other people not to take our Earth for granted.

When I have time between my studies and helping to save the world my favorite hobby is dancing, specifically with hula hoops. I've been hooping for almost 2 years and last fall I felt like a full-fledged circus performer when I finally got to try Fire Hooping.



Nina Schexnider: Campus Sustainability Data Analysis Intern

Major(s): Anthropology, Biology

"You reap what you sow."

Reading books, playing sports, traveling.






Saskia Zinn - Morris Model Intern

Major(s): French and German

Sustainability to me means caring for and maintaining the different areas of education, community and the environment in ways that will allow future generations to appreciate them just as we do now. Additionally, ensuring that the projects we implement in these different areas are ones that have strong enough foundations to outlast our generation, and cultivate further beneficial advancements for the future.

Traveling, tiny homes design, reading, hiking, camping, cooking, skiing.




Sustainable actions that promote the continuity of our unique environments and communities while maintaining the happiness of their residents is needed now more than ever. I hope to encourage and make these sorts of actions while working with the local foods system in Morris and am excited to see what kind of impact we can make.

I love living in new places, traveling and exploring the world, gardening, cooking, eating, hiking and camping! I also love learning about our food system, both locally and around the world.




Majors: Environmental Studies and Spanish, Minor: Political Science

Sustainability and sustainable thinking is important to me because it is the only way to ensure our quality of life now and in the future. We depend on each other as a species for our survival and happiness just as we rely on our environment for everything from water filtration to food to fun. So it only makes sense that we should value humanity and the Earth as well economic benefit in our lives and our political and economic systems.

I enjoy practicing TaeKwonDo, reading, and learning new things.



Majors: Environmental Studies and American Indian Studies

The Seven Fires Prophecy is an important part of Anishinaabe teachings. It is my belief that this generation is faced with a choice between two roads.  The wrong road will lead us to destruction, but if we choose the right road, “the seventh fire will light the eighth and final fire, an eternal fire of peace, love, brotherhood and sisterhood.” As an Anishinaabe woman, I feel a responsibility toward protecting the water and the land. But to me, sustainability is more than that. It’s about sustaining peaceful relationships within our communities and personal lives, and fostering a spiritual connection with our Mother Earth.

I love living a vegan lifestyle, and am currently making plans to build an off-grid tiny house. I am extremely interested in renewable energy projects on tribal lands, and my biggest aspiration in life is to create an eco-commune on my reservation.



Majors: Sociology and Philosophy

Sustainability to me symbolizes the preservation of “earthly” cultures and ways to improve the ways of living for ourselves and our futures. The ways we directly and indirectly interact with the environment and each other will impact our lives in some ways. Sustainability will allow me to find the link between our causes and effects with not only the environment but with the people and other organisms.

My hobbies are reading books I find interesting, watching dramas and anime, learning new things, playing any sport - especially soccer - listening to music, and singing.



Major: Environmental Studies

Sustainability is a concept that encourages us to live a life with purpose, emphasizing how our lifestyle choices affect not only our local community but communities across the world. It is a lifestyle in which I was raised, before it was formally formed as a concept.  As a child I helped my dad maintain a large garden, helped my mom hang clothes on our clothesline, and engaged with the natural world every chance I had. Every choice we make in this world leaves a footprint, every footprint we make leaves a mark. It is our responsibility to leave this earth in as good or better condition for future generations.

I am passionate about running, reading, crocheting, gardening, and being outdoors.



Majors: Physics and Environmental Science

Sustainability is important to me because I want to make an impact on the world around me, and leave it better than it was for future generations.

At UMM I am involved in the Women's Varsity Soccer Team and Physics Club. I enjoy learning, running, working out, spending time with friends and family, and playing with my puppy, Lucy, in my free time. I like to stay busy and hope to become an Environmental Engineer in the future.




Majors: Sociology and Human Services

Sustainability is important to me because humans are impacting the world in a terrible way. We need a way to preserve the planet and sustainability is the best way for that! There is so much to this world that is beautiful; I want future generations to see it its beauty.

I love photography, volleyball, hiking, horseback riding, traveling, animals and farm life. I currently have only been to Italy outside of the U.S, but I'm hoping to change that very soon.



Major: Biology

The interconnectedness of people, societies, and the environment is an idea that appeals to me and manifests itself in a hope that we can use our actions to create a more equitable world for everyone in it. Minimizing our negative impact on each other and maximizing the effectiveness of resources we use can help us provide for ourselves and other living things in both the present and future. Therefore, I think focusing on sustainable practices in every facet of life can help make the world a more pleasant place for everyone here.

I also enjoy reading and learning about different places and people, as well as spending time outside.



Major: Biology, Minor: Chemistry

Sustainability is an important concept to me because it is an idea that can help bring people together for the greater good. People can rally around the idea of creating an environment that future generations can enjoy. Preserving our environment and working to develop clean energy alternatives to fossil fuels is not only extremely important, but very interesting as well. Everyday people are finding new ways to help create a more sustainable international community. Creating a sustainable environment and developing new ideas to make a better world for tomorrow is a passion of mine. It is an incredible feeling when everyone is able to put aside their differences and come together to solve a problem, and this is something that sustainability helps achieve. I believe that sustainable thinking and ideology is the backbone to any healthy functioning society.

I enjoy playing sports, hanging out with friends and family, exploring new places, and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.



Major: Environmental Studies Minor: Biology

Sustainability is about making mindful choices. The Latin root for sustainability is made up of sustinere, which translates tenere, to hold, and sub, up. The Latin root word implies effortful action on our part. Economically, socially, environmentally, and relationally impacts must all be considered in the susty stew. To me sustainability is doing the best with what I am given. I am passionate about this work because I want to protect the wild places.

I enjoy enlightened forms of transportation such as bicycling, foot-travel, and rail-travel. I like exploring new places and being in nature. I like learning new processes, activities, and why things are the way they are.



Major: Biology

For me sustainability means how biological systems are able to endure and survive. With that definition in mind for me sustainability means making sure that we as human being don't forget about those biological systems. In the world that we live today human being and me included are so preoccupied in surviving. We put all of our attention in surviving midterms, to surviving a long day at work or, even surviving a break up. In our attempt to survive our daily day activities, we sometimes damage does biological systems. For me sustainability means, being able to endure and survive this world while making sure I don't damage the world I'm living in, and its biological systems. In other world, it means making anything in my power to make sure the world I live in survives, because if he dies I by default die as well.

I enjoy anything related to the ocean.



Majors: Environmental Studies and Management

I am passionate about sustainability because I want to do as much as I can to protect the beautiful places in this world so that I and others can enjoy them for years to come.

Interests: just about anything and everything that involves being outdoors, especially skiing, running, hiking, camping, exploring new places, and being in the sun and water.




Major(s): Environmental Science and Geology

Sustainability is important to me because it's something that I can do by myself, for myself, while also benefiting my neighbors, local and global community. Living a sustainable lifestyle means a lot of different things, and allows me a lot of diversity, flexibility and creativity in my life. Sustainability if anything but boring or limiting.

Interests: I enjoy getting outside and learning about the environments around me. I tend to bike, hike, kayak, or just take a walk through the park. I also enjoy reading, particularly about history.



Major(s): Biochemistry

Sustainability is important to me because we live in a beautiful world and have a much-neglected obligation to reduce our collective impact on the environment. Also, not only does thinking sustainably help us connect with the world around us, but with the people around us as well, which is pretty neat.

Interests: Running, reading pop. science, and adventuring!




Major(s): Biology and Environmental Science

Sustainability is not only the goal of creating environmentally friendly practices, but the collaboration of all of us. The changes this world will face will affect us all, so to me - sustainability also includes a gigantic group effort.

Interests: Piano, Cello, Pomme de Terre Foods, Fishing




Major(s): Environmental Studies and Anthropology and American Indian Studies

Sustainability and its importance to me is hard to put in words. I grew up surrounded by nature so it's never been a question for me why the health of the environment is important. I consider sustainability and the environment to be core parts of who I am. I want everyone to be able to experience some connection with nature and to be able to live a healthy life. If the environment is at risk, so are we.

Interests: I spend a lot of my free time with my cat Juniper. We mostly snuggle and play, but we also like to go on road trips. I also enjoy watching documentaries, cooking, and exploring new places.




Major(s): Environmental Science and a minor in Biology

Sustainability is important to me because I want the next generations to be able to see the beauty that the Earth has to offer and be able to partake in the gifts that are given to us. I am passionate about conserving our forests and national/state parks.

Interests: I enjoy reading, camping, hiking, playing video games, laughing, swimming, listening to music, and just being outside in general.





Major(s): German, Global Business Management, and Economics

Sustainability is the idea that we should live in a way that meets the needs of the present without compromising the future. We should develop strategies that provide for our current standard of living without jeopardizing the standard of living in the future. It is important to me because I feel that we need to restructure our thinking in a way that shifts the focus back on creating a better world today for the future generations of tomorrow. It is important to me because I feel humanities greatest asset, our earth, is threatened and in need of protecting.

Interests: I enjoy naps with my lazy cat and hiking in State parks. I am politically active particularly at the local level. I am the president of the UMM German Club and enjoy the many multicultural events at UMM.



Major(s): Industrial Engineering and Environmental Engineering

Sustainability means a lot to me. In my opinion we have to live sustainable to protect our planet with all the beautiful places for future generations.

Interests: All kind of sports, traveling, reading





Hannah Johnson: Morris Model Community Resilience Intern

Major(s): Environmental Studies and Native American Indigenous Studies, 2020

To me, sustainability is not only a goal, but a way of looking at the world that challenges existing structures. It’s about asking, “Is this working? Will this work in 10, 20, 50 years?” To live and work sustainably is to think critically about the systems in place, and to collaborate with people within the system to enact positive and lasting change.
Sustainability is important to me because I care about the natural world and sustaining it for future generations.

Interests: I love canoeing in the Boundary Waters.  I am passionate about tea and coffee drinks, gourds, and love my tuxedo cats!!




Lily Heyd: Communications Intern

Major(s) B.A. Biology with an environmental focus, 2020

I've always seen sustainability as a very important world issue, as it affects every aspect of life, from food security and the air we breathe to how we connect with each other. I believe sustainability is communities of people, working from the ground up to better the environment around them, as well as bettering the lives of others. To me, the most important sustainability aspect is that of working together, because nobody can get anything done by themselves.

Interests: I spend my time caring for my large collection of indoor plants, playing Stardew Valley, and drawing from nature. If I’m not doing that, then I am probably eating or drinking coffee!

Cassidy Elhard: Morris Model Intern

Major(s): Environmental Science and German Studies, 2021

Sustainability is important to me because I believe that it is essential for us, as advanced beings on this planet,  to find a way of existing in our ecosystem in a manner that is conscientious to the responsibility of preservation for not only future generations of humans but also other forms of life. Additionally, I believe we have the responsibility of holding high moral values in regards to how we take care of our environment and the other beings in it, and I believe that the sustainability movement can eventually establish the endeavorment to do so as status quo.

Interests: I am interested in traveling, learning about other cultures, and taking care of animals.



Mckenzie Dice: Morris Model International Partnership Intern

Major(s): Environmental Science, German, Chemistry minor, 2019

One of the main reasons I am at Morris is because of the passion for sustainability that many of the students and faculty share. It is amazing to be a part of a community that cares so deeply for their environment and wants to see change in the world that will ensure a sustainable future. There are many aspects to sustainability that I believe everyone can become involved in, whether it be education, research, or communication, and it is important to realize that building a sustainable world is a team effort. I am passionate about sustainability because I believe in keeping our earth beautiful for future generations.

Interests: Reading, knitting, traveling, my cats and my rabbits, being in the mountains.

Sydney Bauer: Energy Intern

Major(s): Biology, Environmental Leadership and Stewardship, 2019

Sustainability is a very big umbrella term that includes many types of societal, economic, and personal efforts in order to better the planet. I believe that all students could actively engage in this work, by doing things such as learning more about where your waste goes, understanding policy surrounding microgrids, or running community-wide climate education programs. It is important to me that folks engage in these issues because all of them highlight the importance for worldwide change via community action.

Interests: I spend my time driving the Morris Transit, finding and eating snacks, as well as shopping at the local Someplace Safe Thrift Store.

Dennis Dongmin Kim: Energy Data Analyst Intern

Major(s): Statistics, Applied Ecology, Biology and Mathematics minor, 2019

Sustainability is important to me because our future depends on it. Simple as that. Sustainability = Environment + Economy + Society

Interests: Ecology

Jules Burke: Energy Intern

Major(s): Native American and Indigenous Studies, Environmental Studies, 2021

Sustainability is the simultaneity of strong community and independence. 

Interests: Sound, music production, theme parks


Becca Gomez: Morris Model Community Resilience Intern

Major(s): Biology and Environmental Science, 2020

Sustainability is important to me because we must find a way to live that impacts the future positively. The earth is not ours to just take from, but to cultivate and improve.

Interests: I am a co-chair for CAC Homecoming and Traditions committee as well as the Training Coordinator at Higbies, but in my free time I enjoy hiking, photography, experimenting with new food recipes, and attempting to teach my Betta Fish some tricks.

Abbey Dickhudt: Climate Education Intern

Major(s): Environmental Studies and Human Services, 2019

Sustainability involves looking at the past, present, and future to see what work is necessary to move our communities into healthy futures that include clean air, protected waterways, healthy energy, place-based food systems, resiliency and other needs based upon where a community is. It means responding to the space and passing it onto those that come after you.

Interests: I am interested in sustainable agriculture, working with the next generation of youth, and taking time to move, garden, read, and create.

Khondoker Prio (Ahnaf): Software Systems Engineering Intern

Major(s): Computer Science, 2019

I am from Dhaka, Bangladesh. Seventeen million of Bangladesh’s 29 million households lack access to grid power, according to national statistics, relying on fossil fuels and traditional biomass for lighting and power. Sustainability to me is the solution that will lead to a better future for my people. I am passionate about the development processes of energy monitoring and prediction systems. I truly believe technology can do a lot to solve the energy crisis and to create a sustainable future.

Interests: I enjoy playing guitar surrounded by my friends near a campfire. I play soccer and occasionally cook spicy chicken curry that is not nearly as good as my mom's. When I’m not turning coffee into code, I’m usually with my friends at the local Couch House!

Alex Keller: Morris Model Intern

Major(s): Chemistry, Mathematics minor, 2019

Sustainability is a lifestyle choice that involves the collaboration of individuals to maintain and thrive in our own environment. It encompasses the idea that we must adapt and strive for environmental and social changes to improve the overall quality of the planet and quality of life of future generations.

Interests: Playing soccer and being active in general, board and card games, traveling, relaxing and hanging out with friends.

Josie Rehbein: Zero Waste Intern

Major(s): Environmental Science, Biology, English minor, 2022

I think sustainability is a prerequisite to a successful future. It is important that society recognizes the importance of sustainability for it can lead to a more comfortable economical, societal, and environmental future.

Interests: I like hanging out with my cats, baking, traveling, and reading.

Erin Wilaby: Research Intern

Major: Environmental Science, 2019

They / Them

To me, sustainability means living in a way that could continue indefinitely and that anyone could do. So, living in a way that won’t use resources faster than they’re produced, and in a way that’s economically viable for everyone.

Interests: Outdoor activities, plant and insect identification, reading, cooking (especially with fresh produce)