For the SP 2020 semester, this course is working in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection's Energy Program Office and ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability to provide climate action planning recommendations to Ferguson Township and State College Borough. Students will participate in ICLEI-sponsored weekly webinars (either live or later with the recording) and walk through the process of developing climate action plans in local government. This project will afford students the firsthand experience of informing the development of local policy to address climate- and energy-related issues in these communities and will help build translatable skills which could be applied in other municipalities or higher levels of governance or private policy.
This project counts for 50% of the overall course grade, with 25% from the recommendations provided and 25% from the poster created. Additionally, weekly quizzes to ensure students review and understand the topics covered in the webinars will be administerd in 10 of the weeks. Those quizzes, along with other small deliverables throughout the term, will represent the other 50% of the course grade this semester.
Students may choose to complete the project (recommendations and poster) independently or in groups of up to 4 people. If students choose to work together, grades on submitted project deliverables (draft recommendations, draft poster, final recommendations, and final poster) will be uniformally assessed across the group. Please choose your groupmates carefully should you elect to work collaboratively.
This project is made possible not just by the generosity of ICLEI and PA DEP in allowing us to tag along on this local climate pilot program they're running this year, but also through the Penn State Sustainability Institute's Sustainable Communities Collaborative which partners Penn State courses with community project ideas to give students hands-on experience.