Monday, March 14, 2011 - 9:18am

“Seeking Sustainability: A Culture of Community, Compassion, Connection, and Choice” was the theme of the spring semester college-wide faculty development program held recently on JCC's Jamestown Campus.

Mike Jabot, professor of science education at the SUNY Fredonia, and Sherri A. Mason, associate professor of chemistry at SUNY Fredonia, delivered the keynote address, “Why Educate for Sustainability?”

The presentation, describing sustainability as the “ultimate liberal art,” encouraged thinking among all academic disciplines to allow humans to sustain themselves on Earth. Drs. Jabot and Mason also led a hands-on simulation titled “The Fish Game,” engaging faculty in an interactive, replicable, interdisciplinary activity combining systems thinking tools, ecological systems, and economics in a move toward a more sustainable future.

Becky Nystrom, professor of biology at JCC, presented a session on JCC's emerging vision for a culture of sustainability. Shaun Irland, English composition instructor, moderated a panel discussion on disciplinary approaches to issues of sustainability. Panelists included Laura Anderson, assistant professor of Spanish; Jan Bowman, associate professor of biology; Megan McCune, assistant professor of anthropology and sociology; Taylor Pancoast, professor of chemistry; Bill Penfold, director of instructional computing and software; Gant Umberger, director of continuing education; and Martha Zenns, professor of business and economics.

Faculty development breakout sessions focused on recycling, advisement, JCC's honors program, library collections, the “fair trade movement,” energy smart actions, experiential learning, and student-faculty communications.

During the daylong program, participants had several opportunities to view a multimedia project by Deb Lanni, professor of communication and media arts, titled “Embrace: Celebrating the Sustainability Ethic.” The project was based on the Great Binding Law of the Iroquois Nation, commonly known as the 7th Generation Principle.

Faculty attending the development activities contributed non-perishable foods to benefit the St. Susan's and Joint Neighborhood Project food pantries.

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