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Morgan Curtis

I came up with this dream, this journey, one night sitting by my wood stove at Chewonki, where I worked this past year in Maine. It’s the top-right hand corner of the USA. I lived on the ocean, in a cabin, amongst white pine and birch trees. I taught high school students about environmental issues and renewable energy solutions, as part of a four month immersive experiential education program. They inspired me every day.

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Climate change. The two words for me elicit a physical reaction. My brain clicks into gear, flitting from policy proposals to media mentions to engineering innovations. My heart aches, the pain of the injustice of continued fossil fuel extraction almost overwhelming at times. Yet my soul soars, buoyed by the inspiration, optimism and joy that is this international movement imagining a better future. One of my small parts of it is coordinating Alumni for Divest Dartmouth, working to get Dartmouth College to divest from fossil fuels. I’m also the Media Lead for the Multi-School Fossil Free Divestment Fund, organizing alongside other university alumni to increase pressure on our alma maters to move towards the right side of history. While in college I travelled around the United States, to thirty-three of them, exactly, aboard The Big Green Bus. We held sixty-six public events, talking about alternative fuels and sustainability. Later, I was Co-Chair of the National Biodiesel Board’s Next Generation Scientists for Biodiesel. I was also director of the Dartmouth Office of Sustainability’s EcoReps program. I interned with the Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program, working at the Yellowstone-Teton Clean Energy Coalition in Jackson, WY, promoting alternative fuels and vehicles. I attended and was deeply inspired by both Powershift 2011 and 2013. In high school I was a London Climate Change Youth Ambassador.

Story-telling  is the way by which, in an increasingly flittering world, we truly speak to one another. Writing is a passion of mine, one that I have explored in many dimensions. I write creative non-fiction, poetry, press releases and meandering journal entries. I was the Under-19 Runner-up in the UK Wills Writing Awards. I attended the 2015 Bread Loaf Orion Environmental Writers’ Conference.

It is in the great outdoors that I have fallen in love with our world. I have had the privilege to extensively hike, bike, ride, ski, climb and camp. I worked as a horse wrangler at HF Bar Ranch in Saddlestring, WY. I led first-year trips for the Dartmouth Outing Club, and mentored middle and high schoolers with Outdoor Leadership Experience. I have adventured widely in the United States, Europe and Southern Africa. I am a Wilderness First Responder.

My formal education: I graduated from Dartmouth College in 2014 with a degree in Engineering and Environmental Science. I studied abroad in Southern Africa, exploring environmental issues and their intersection with human development. I went to St Paul’s Girls’ School in London, England, where I grew up.

 Garrett Blad

GarrettTEDxNDPeople. Intelligent bipeds capable of communication, abstract reasoning, problem solving, and compassion. People are why I ride for climate solutions, since humans are both the cause and the solution to global warming. And the movement demanding solutions is growing stronger. I have seen it for myself. While biking through Maine two summers ago as a part of Climate Summer, I helped to campaign against the reversal of the Portland Montreal Pipeline which would have shipped tar sands from the Alberta region in Canada to Maine for export. In July 2014, South Portland enacted a ban on tar sands. At Notre Dame, I have seen the movement grow. As the co-founder of Fossil Free ND, a campaign calling for divestment from fossil fuels, I have seen the awareness of climate change grow on college campuses not only in the Midwest but also around the nation. Last summer as a Fossil Free Fellow with 350.org, I interned externally with MORE (Missourians Organizing for Reform and Empowerment) in St. Louis, MO, where I saw the climate movement as a part of a larger movement against racism and income inequality. And finally, this past fall, I had the privilege of attending the People’s Climate March, a clarion call from over 400,000 strong in New York City, representing the work of thousands of organizers across the country, all simultaneously uniting to build this movement of movements.

Art has been a passion of mine since I was a wee-little young’un. While biking with Morgan, I am the visual documenter for the journey. Deferring a Post-Baccalaureate Fine Arts program until next year, I am taking advantage of this opportunity to put my creative energy to work supporting the climate movement – creating videos, taking pictures, sketching images, and collaging montages of our experiences, thoughts, and development. I mostly paint and draw, but have recently become obsessed with collage as a medium, which has pulled me into multi-media expression. I am excited to have such a real way to merge my passion for climate action with my desire to create.

My formal education: I graduated from the University of Notre Dame in May 2015 with a degree in Sustainable Policy and Environmental Science. My sophomore year, I studied abroad in Angers, France where I completed a course thesis examining the incentives for renewable energy in the European Union. I am overwhelmed at the opportunity to return to France by means of a slow-paced purposeful climate journey for COP21. Mes amis, ma mère d’accueille, et la langue française (et même les français) me manquent trop. Je viens, je vous promets, mais lentement.

I grew up in North Liberty, IN, where I attended a small Catholic elementary school and completed my secondary education in public school, graduating in 2011 from John Glenn High School in Walkerton, IN.