By Jen Cole

As part of the Road to Greenbuild, the USGBC MA has begun a legacy project at Madison Park High School called the Green Building Tech Club. The after school IMG_1238program starting in September will run 3-5 pm once a week and introduce and prepare the underrepresented community at the vocational high school to “green economy” careers in facilities management. Students involved will be engaged with presentations from various local professionals, a trip to the Expo Hall at Greenbuild 2017, tours of high-performance green buildings in our area, as well as mentorship from Wentworth Institute of Technology Environmental Collaborative.

Over 30 students came out to the informational session last week and 15 signed up to be apart of the club when they return to school in the Fall. Almost 50% of the interested IMG_1218students were female and 90% of all students at the high school are people of color. All of the students were interested in the jobs and internships that will come from the participation in this program. It is our hope that the legacy of this club at Madison Park will be a catalyst for developing green building programs in curricula of vocational schools throughout the Commonwealth.

The idea for the Green Building Tech Club came from a need to build awareness of the ‘green economy’ career opportunities and to encourage young people to explore these options that they might not have otherwise considered. The USGBC Massachusetts Chapter wants students to be interested in pursuing careers in the trades with a specific eye towards sustainability. We cannot thank Madison Park High School administration and faculty enough for being excited and in full support of this new club for their students.

Visit the USGBC MA website for more updates about this year’s Legacy Project, and don’t forget to register for Greenbuild!

Our thoughts on Paris…

Last week, the U.S. Government decided to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, a pact the U.S. made with 194 nations to reverse the negative effects of climate change. As sustainability leaders, this is perceived as a giant setback to our mission and what we’re trying to achieve in our daily work—to create a more sustainable future for all.

However, every cloud has a silver lining: Because of the administration’s recent decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, climate change continues to be an important national and international news item and discussions among political and business leaders carry on. Not only did 1,100 corporations urge President Trump to stay in the deal, but these companies also vowed to uphold their commitment to invest in clean energy. We also saw individual U.S. states and 12 major U.S. cities pledge to pursue policies from the Paris Agreement.

The work that we do in sustainable business has never been more important. Now, more than ever, it is up to us to come together and collaborate in ways that make the sustainability movement stronger and more visible—to keep doing what we believe in and to make a difference for future generations to come.  At Greenbuild, November 8 to 10 in Boston, it will be time to unite as one movement of 25,000 voices strong and continue to drive the green building movement forward.

Everyone. Everywhere. Every Project. We are ALL IN. THIS is why we Greenbuild.