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York U Is Making Positive Change for a Just & Sustainable Future

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York University’s Faculty of Environmental and Urban Change is mobilizing knowledge for a just and sustainable world.

York University’s Faculty of Environmental and Urban Change (EUC) is designed to foster the future leaders and change-makers our society needs. The Faculty aims to be an international leader of critical and innovative urban, environmental, and geographic knowledge and skills in pursuit of justice and sustainability. EUC professors, researchers, staff, students, alumni, and community partners are united in responding to some of the most pressing challenges facing people & our planet.

In 2020, the school launched a series of innovative new programs. Undergraduate programs in EUC now include Cities, Regions, Planning; Environmental Arts and Justice; Environmental Science; Global Geography; Sustainable Environmental Management; and Ecosystem Management. EUC has Environmental Studies and Geography graduate programs, and Continuing Studies options including a Certificate in Climate Solutions and Sustainable Energy, a Certificate in Cultural and Artistic Practices for Environmental and Social Justice, and a Certificate in Geomatics: Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing.

The Faculty boasts over 12,000 alumni worldwide, 600-plus undergraduate students, 375 graduate students, over 200 courses and is situated at the fourth largest University in Canada. It supports students who dream of creating a better world and setting out on exciting career paths that will make positive change. EUC programs prepare its students with the fundamental knowledge, critical thinking skills, hands-on experience, and global perspectives necessary to achieve personal success and better our world.

EUC programs prepare its students with the fundamental knowledge, critical thinking skills, hands-on experience, and global perspectives necessary to achieve personal success and better our world.

Here are a few of the inspiring students currently studying in the Faculty of EUC.

Justin Chan_York university

Justin Chan

Sustainable Environmental Management (BES) student, York University

Justin Chan, a third-year student in Sustainable Environmental Management (BES), has always had a strong interest in agriculture, sustainable farming, and food. In high school, he was keenly interested in environmental sciences and physical geography while also being fascinated by the socio-political aspects of environmental issues. EUC’s Sustainable Environmental Management program caught his attention and he’s never looked back.

Chan is currently participating in the Dean’s Changemaker Placement with EUC’s Maloca Community Garden, a living lab for hands-on learning on campus, and is the winner of the 2021 UNHack Competition.

“I want to change how food is distributed and make it more accessible,” he says. “There’s a lot of food insecurity in places where most would least expect it.”

Rachel Pellegrino_York university

Rachel Pellegrino

Global Geography (BA) student, York University

Rachel Pellegrino, a fourth-year student in Global Geography (BA), is currently completing an honours thesis in physical geography, assessing the response following rapid drainage in a lake of the Mackenzie Delta uplands, Northwest Territories, using sedimentary diatoms. She has completed several field study courses, including Learning the Bruce, a week-long exploration of the Bruce Peninsula.

Pellegrino’s passion for geography began in high school thanks to “the best geography teacher ever,” and she now plans to become a high school geography teacher herself. “I want to change the world through the amplification of Indigenous voices and knowledge systems to bridge the gap between western science and Indigenous science,” she says. “I’d like to do this through the education of our younger generations.”

Anica Britasevic_York university

Anica Birtasevic

Cities, Regions, Planning (BES) student, York University

Anica Birtasevic, a third-year student in the Cities, Regions, Planning (BES) program concurrent pursuing the Climate Solutions and Sustainable Energy Certificate and is an intern at Oxford Properties, a leading global real estate investor, asset manager, and business builder.

As a community-centered volunteer, Birtasevic developed an interest in how Canada can better create climate-friendly cities that are sustainable, affordable, and accessible.

“I want to become an urban planner who focuses on place-making,” she says. “I’d be able to affect the most change in this role since I’ll hopefully be able to help find climate solutions that are aimed at creating a de-carbonized economy by linking and democratizing sustainable community place-making and renewable energy.”

Kaitlin Pal_York university

Kaitlin Pal

Environmental Arts and Justice (BES) student, York University

Kaitlin Pal, a second-year student in Environmental Arts and Justice (BES), enjoys exploring environmental issues using a multidisciplinary approach. Through her program, she studies geography, environmental humanities and politics, economics, and community arts.

“I chose my program because it combines my creative interests and my passion for sustainability and environmental issues,” says Pal. “I’ve always been curious about nature and how the world works.”

Pal’s program enables her to use her creativity through arts-based and theoretical based research to influence environmental change. Within EUC, she volunteers as a Peer Mentor and works as a Dean’s Changemaker for the Ecological Footprint Initiative at York. Pal wants to change the world by advocating for environmental change through legislation and plans to attend law school.

Pawel Silwa_York university

Pawel Sliwa

Environmental Science (BSc)student, York University

Pawel Sliwa, a third-year student in Environmental Science (BSc), is passionate about exploring remote areas. Having to use topographic maps while hiking and backpacking gave him an appreciation of how landscapes are formed and led him to his current studies.

Sliwa’s classes are focused on biology and geography, and this semester he’s taking several ecology-based courses, which has ignited a passion for learning about conserving biodiversity to ensure a sustainable future.

“I want to change the world by getting people to have more interaction with their local spaces,” says Sliwa. “I believe that being more mindful of the spaces we occupy will encourage us to make more sustainable choices.”

Become a Changemaker for a Just and Sustainable Future

The new Faculty of Environmental and Urban Change at York University
is a call to action to respond to today’s most pressing challenges facing people and the planet. Discover career paths that will make a better world. The faculty’s
programs will prepare you with the fundamental knowledge, critical thinking skills, hands-on experience, and global perspectives necessary to achieve
personal success and make positive change.

Cities, Regions, Planning (BES)

Urban city_york university

We live in an urban world. Learn how inclusive and sustainable planning can help cities and regions around the globe face and manage the social and environmental challenges caused by increased urban life.

• Urban/Transportation Planner
• Policy Advisor and Consultant
• Planning and Space Assessor

Ecosystem Management with Fleming College (BES)

Heron bird_york university

Learn how we can sustain and revitalize our natural environment through the conservation and restoration of our ecosystems.

• Land Use Auditor
• Habitat Assessor
• Environmental Consultant

Environmental Science (BSc)

Polar bear_york university

Explore how human activity impacts our planet. Learn how the biological and physical sciences can address the global environmental challenges of our time. This program is offered jointly with the Faculty of Science.

• Climate Change Scientist
• Hydrologist
• Wildlife Biologist

Environmental Arts and Justice (BES)

Morgan Johnson Masks made by_ Alexandra Simpson_york university

Choose a degree that centres on solutions for a just and equitable world. Address global environmental challenges through political, philosophical, artistic, cultural, and educational theory and practice.

• Artist and Designer
• Cultural Producer
• Diversity and Equity Professional

Global Geography (BA)

Urban city 2_york university

Geography is about knowing your world and how it works, from the largest cities to the most remote environments. We apply ways of thinking that bring together the arts and sciences to find solutions to real-world problems.

• Data Analyst
• Policy Advisor
• Logistics Coordinator

Sustainable Environmental Management (BES)

green land_york university

Explore some of the most critical issues facing the earth today: the climate crisis, the loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services, waste management, energy consumption, and sustainable solutions.

• Environmental Site Assessor
• Energy Consultant
• Green Entrepreneur

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