On Saturday, January 24, 2015, The Illinois Association of Environmental Professionals (IAEP) hosted its annual Student Career Conference at DePaul University, Chicago, IL.
The IAEP is a society of professionals who work unswervingly to enhance our global environment. It serves to connect specialists in business, government and education in the fields of environmental planning, research, management, and evaluation. The society also offers certificate programs and awards research grants to students enrolled in environmental programs.
The purpose of the IAEP Student Career Conference is to deliver information about the benefits of professional organizations and internships, and teach the next professional generation how to network and build a CV/resume.
Versatile students from several colleges near Chicago, had the opportunity to network, explore career options within various sectors, and get a personalized resume review from each of the following speakers:
Robert P. Sliwinski, M.S. CPESC – Senior Wildlife Biologist, Christopher B. Burke Engineering Inc. and President of the Illinois Association of Environmental Professionals
James E. Huff, P.E. – Owner of Huff & Huff, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of GZA GeoEnvironmental, Inc.
George P. Nassos – Principal of George P. Nassos & Associates, a consulting company focusing on renewable energy and environmental sustainability
Mary Rasic, Sustainability Studies student at Roosevelt University, attended the IAEP Conference and reported back with optimistic reflections. The main takeaway was Dr. Nassos’ discussion concerning why sustainability should be more of a culture, imbedded in the business and politics of our country. From his lecture, Mary noted that most corporations focus on 3-month economic returns, whereas, sustainability has more long-term investments. The global economy, namely the U.S., needs a business strategy for natural resources by employing sustainability in business courses. Nassos proposed some ways that the government could regulate our resources, such as, applying a carbon tax to influence entities to conserve and explore alternative energy sources.
Dr. Nassos concluded his lecture on a powerful note – he said that there are many individuals who do not believe in global warming. Worse yet – there are people that consider it a possibility, but disregard the evidence because they likely won’t be around for the repercussions. Nassos’ response to that viewpoint:
“Say nothing happens, carbon emissions are a hoax and the world will be fine…But say that all the scientific predictions are accurate… wouldn’t you rather contribute to the solution while the opportunity exists instead of later regretting what you didn’t do, when it’s too late”?