Sustainability Leadership Training
In April 2015, five members of the UC Irvine community
went to Guatemala to take part in a Leadership Training
with young people from around Latin America.
This photo gallery highlights their experiences
and realizations in their own words.
"I was impacted by the participants who came from other countries with different ways of acting and thinking, with experiences and powerful stories and difficult lives with deficiencies that have to be addressed.
Living with these young people was one of the best experiences I had in the week-long training."
"Students from El Salvador and Guatemala attended this training to become leaders in their community. These students also realized that I was attending the training for the purpose of applying what I learned to my community.
We all come from different backgrounds, but we all had the same goal: to learn how to facilitate change."
Urban Studies, Undergraduate
Global Sustainability Minor
"The word I would use to describe my experience is the Spanish word, convivencia.
The literal translation is coexistence, but the connotation in Spanish is more about being among and living with others in an intimate, appreciative, and respectful way."
FloodRISE Project Manager
"I used the skills I learned right away in a UCI-sponsored event in the Borrego Springs community with 24 kids, ages 14-18.
I will continue to use these skills as we offer more transformational leadership opportunitiess to the students at UCI and the communities around southern California."
Global Sustainability Resource Center
"Sharing with new people is something I enjoy very much.
The experiences recounted by those who have gone through this training is the inspiration that drives me every day."
Leadership Training Facilitator
Suchitoto, El Salvador
"I will never forget a remark made by one of the Central American participants.
It was this idea that if the U.S. sneezes, then Guatemala will get a cold. That was really impactful for me. At first, I didn’t know how to deal with it, but I learned how to turn my guilt into inspiration to change."
UC Irvine Undergraduate Student
Global Sustainability Minor
In April 2015, UC Irvine students and sustainability leadership staff embarked on a journey to Guatemala to participate in a Sustainability Leadership Training with SERES, a non-governmental organization based in Central America whose mission is to empower young leaders to build sustainable, healthy, and thriving communities through education and transformative leadership.
The Sustainability Leadership Training complements what sustainability students are learning in the classroom by providing a hands-on opportunity to engage global sustainability-related issues, build transformative leadership skills, and develop a critical lens on local-global solidarity and international development. Through the training, the participating students are now taking on greater roles in peer facilitation, community visioning, and action planning through the co-curricular programs at the Global Sustainability Resource Center.
Above is a photo journal with words and images from participants to help describe transformative leadership and the impact of this approach on students and professionals worldwide. To navigate, click on the photo icons below the main photo.