Samuel Lavine ’22 is a history major with a minor in political science and a passion for the environment. As an intern for Dickinson’s Center for Sustainability Education (CSE), he gathered data to create greenhouse gas emissions inventories for Dickinson, the town of Carlisle and all of Cumberland County. As a Baird Sustainability Fellow, he collaborated on a climate-vulnerability assessment for Cumberland County. And as a student leader with Carlisle Sunrise, he organized rallies and promoted action related to climate concerns. Next fall, he'll enter graduate school at the Columbia Climate School.
Clubs and organizations:
Carlisle Sunrise, CSE (intern), Club Soccer and Moot Court.
Baird Sustainability Fellow, Distinguished Dickinsonian and Alpha Lambda Delta.
Best thing about my Dickinson experience:
I have had the unique opportunity to advance local climate-action planning. As an intern with Dickinson’s Center for Sustainability Education, I gathered data to create greenhouse gas emissions inventories for Dickinson, Carlisle and Cumberland County. This information enabled the college and local governments to assess their pollution and enact policies to be more sustainable. As a Baird Sustainability Fellow, I was fortunate enough to work on a great team of students as we collaborated and created a climate vulnerability assessment for Cumberland County. This project helped the Cumberland County Planning Department develop strategies to mitigate the impacts of climate change. Lastly, as a leader in Carlisle Sunrise, I helped mobilize the political willpower to accelerate these climate-action efforts. Carlisle Sunrise brought together community activists and local legislators and organized rallies in Carlisle and Harrisburg to promote action on climate change. These experiences were all supported by Dickinson, and they have helped me get to my next step, studying for my master's in climate policy at Columbia University.
Best thing about my major:
As history majors, we are taught to think critically and examine the world from numerous angles. My best professors forced me to be able to interpret historical events using sociological, psychological, racial, gendered and many other lenses. This has helped me understand and interpret the changes that we see in the world today.
Oral History of the Bosnian Diaspora in Carlisle and Cumberland County with my advisor, Professor of History Karl Qualls. This class focuses on the tragedies of the Bosnian civil war in the 1990s and the Bosniak people as they fled Serbian persecution. Many Bosniaks settled here in Carlisle after the war. For our main project, we interviewed survivors of the conflict, as well as their descendants, to record their memories for future generations to learn from. This has been a distinct learning experience, because I have had the unique opportunity to produce content to shape future curriculums and teach future generations about the pain that hate causes.
As a kid, I wanted to be …
… an astronaut.
I will take a short climate leadership course in Alaska with the Tidelines Institute this summer. In the fall I will begin my master’s degree at the Columbia Climate School.
If I could have dinner with anyone, living or dead, it would be …
… Barack Obama.
About my internship:
I have interned with the Center for Sustainability Education, and I have gotten to work on climate action plans for Dickinson, Carlisle and Cumberland County. I helped gather data so each of these entities could better understand how much greenhouse gases they were emitting, and I helped them develop strategies to reduce their net greenhouse gas emissions. Most recently, I helped Dickinson reduce its net greenhouse gas emissions by passing a resolution through Student Senate that will raise money from study-abroad flights to go to carbon offsets. This internship experience has helped me recognize the complexities involved in climate action planning, and explore the creative solutions required to promote sustainability.
About my research:
As a Baird Sustainability Fellow, I worked on a climate vulnerability assessment for Cumberland County. The Baird Fellows and I each worked extremely hard to create useful information for the Cumberland County Planning Department to begin developing strategies to address the impacts of climate change. We presented this information to dozens of community members and several community leaders. This project felt like a genuine form of community service because we were explaining how local assets can be managed to promote a better future.
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Published May 4, 2022