Our Commitment: Education for Sustainability

The Oberlin Project is committed to educating students and the community to take action to help change the world for the better, both collectively and individually.

The education initiative is guided by representatives of four educational bodies: Oberlin City School District; Lorain County JVS Career-Technical High School; Lorain County Community College; and Oberlin College.

Education for sustainability requires active learning and is holistic, interdisciplinary, and inclusive of the school experience, how the school experience affects the community over time, and reaches out to extend learning opportunities to the community. Achieving sustainability requires responsible and involved citizens who make ethical choices for sustainability and share a commitment to social justice.

The Need:

Students and our communities must understand the environmental issues and sustainability challenges facing society today. The education initiative encourages educators to:

  • Encourage students to engage in critical thinking and develop those skills;
  • Challenge assumptions as new knowledge is generated;
  • Gather evidence as needed to understand issues; and
  • Make connections between ideas and outcomes in order to propose creative solutions to persistent problems.

Responsible, informed choices made on the basis of critical analysis will need to be made to secure a better future. “It [the study of environmental and development issues] goes beyond perceiving the environment as just nature or natural systems and instead recognizes the totality of the surroundings and links between lifestyles and the use of nature.— Daniella Tilbury

We will seek to:

  1. Transform to a holistic educational curricula at Oberlin College, Oberlin High School, Lorain County Community College and Lorain County JVS that will enable our graduates to understand, value and implement sustainable practices.
  2. Establish an educational consortium to provide ongoing best practices and feedback to design and continually improve innovative curricula to support the above.
  3. Identify elements that enable people to understand, value, and implement sustainable practices. 

How we will do it:

  • Create a curriculum framework for both K – 12 and post-secondary to infuse courses with sustainability elements and experiential learning concepts.
  • Create internships and other learning opportunities for students within all partner institutions.
  • Sponsor and co-sponsor events and workshops aimed at information sharing and community engagement.
  • Complete baseline environmental assessments at each partner institution to determine new future programs and projects.

Our next steps:

  • Hire individual(s) to begin implementation of sustainability content into courses and programs at members of the educational consortium.
  • Determine and share baseline assessments of institutional sustainability plans, initiatives, and progress.
  • Determine opportunities for collaboration and internship programs.

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