Born in El Salvador, engineering major Mary Keilhauer grew up in Marietta, Ga., where she was involved with environmental initiatives in high school. “I’m excited to be a NC State Steward because I believe that we have the ability to make a real change here,” Mary said. “I am Wolfpack through and through and I want us to be the best we can be. Together with all the amazing people and the resources here at State, I think that we can affect our school and the communities we are involved in.”
After graduating high school, Garnett Bullock spent a year working on organic farms in Oregon and California through Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms. “I quickly learned how important sustainability was in every aspect of the lives of the folks that hosted me at each farm,” he said. “I formed a great appreciation for sustainability during this experience.” An environmental engineering major from Gastonia, N.C., Garnett is excited to be an NC State Steward student sustainability ambassador for “the opportunity to help improve our campus’ and our community’s efforts to decrease its environmental footprint however we can,” he said.
On the streets of Beijing, Hillary Dimig’s interest in sustainability grew as she interviewed local residents about the city’s environmental policies. “I think it’s important for us at NC State to be aware of actions being taken around the country and around the globe to improve sustainability. This could lead to exciting new opportunities for our own campus,” she said. A chemical engineering major from Youngsville, N.C., Hillary hopes to be a biotechnology research engineer with a focus on sustainability.
Writing a research paper in high school environmental science class is what created Alli Kenlan’s curiosity about sustainability. “The more I learned, the more I realized how important it is for us to take on sustainable practices,” she said. “To me, sustainability means being cognizant of the impacts our actions have on the environment and improving those impacts by changing the way we act and consume.” An environmental science major from Durham, N.C., Alli is excited to join the NC State Stewards, a group of student sustainability ambassadors. “I want students to know that sustainability is not only important but that it’s everywhere and anyone can do it,” she said.
As a 16-year-old, Jenna Bacic watched on television as gallons upon gallons of oil escaped into the Gulf of Mexico from the Deepwater Horizon oil rig. “Sustainability didn’t really mean anything to me until I started to understand what was happening,” she said. “That led me to a passion, which has led me to where I am now at NC State.” An Environmental Technology and Management major from Cary, N.C., Jenna hopes to work toward helping advance sustainability within a large company with a focus on water quality.
Growing up in Four Oaks, N.C., Ian Stancil’s interest in sustainability grew in his family’s small backyard garden. “My family has always taught me to make an effort to become sustainable,” he said. A biochemistry and polymer and color chemistry major, Ian is excited to be an NC State Steward student sustainability ambassador “because of the possibility to foster change within my community,” he said. “The goal of sustainability, to me, is to empower people throughout the world to achieve their basic needs and enjoy an improved quality of life without compromising the quality of life of future generations.” After graduating NC State, Ian plans to pursue a Ph.D. in pharmacology.
A love for nature and the outdoors drives Annie Lopez’s passion for the environment and sustainable living. “Sustainability means living in a way that will have the least possible impact on the environment,” she said. “It is important to me because humans are pushing our environment toward its breaking point, and the only way to turn things around is for everyone to employ sustainable practices.” From Charlottesville, Va., Annie is studying biological and agricultural engineering and is excited to be an NC State Steward. “Each and every one of us is capable of living more sustainably than we do right now, and the amount of extra time and effort necessary to make those changes is small compared to the big positive impact,” she said.
Allison Bryan has always had an interest in sustainability, but it wasn’t until her first year at NC State that her passion for sustainability began to grow. “As a member of the University Honors Program, I was encouraged to explore opinions that were different from my own. Being around people that supported and challenged my views allowed me to experience both personal and academic growth. I believe that sustainability efforts benefit from the synthesis of ideas in the same manner that I did,” she said. An environmental engineering student from Asheville, N.C., Allison plans use engineering to address environmental and natural resource issues after graduation.
Weekend hiking trips as a child first grew Hallie Hartley’s interest in nature. Now as an Environmental Technology major and NC State Steward, Hallie wants all NC State students to know about the need for sustainable lifestyles. “As a science and agriculture based school, people look at NC State as a center of environmental research. All our students should be knowledgeable of sustainable practices for the benefit of our campus, our community and our world,” she said. A native of Waxhaw, N.C., Hallie plans to work several years in the non-profit sector on humanitarian and environmental issues.
Ryan Kilgore believes that ensuring a healthy planet is today’s most important and pressing issue, and that’s why he’s an NC State Steward . “I am extremely excited to begin interacting with NC State’s student body to bring this vague, general, multi-faceted concept of sustainability to them in a very precise, understandable and actionable way,” he said. An engineering student from Cary, N.C., Ryan has interests in renewable energy and other sustainable technology advances. After graduation, Ryan plans to attend graduate school and work in research and development.