Creation of the GSRC
During Academic Year 2011-2012, the former UC Irvine Environment Institute laid groundwork for the creation of GSRC. Staff at the Environment Institute facilitated informal, weekly discussions among sustainability students—both graduate and undergraduate; advised students on academic and career paths; mentored research projects; trained students in basic professional skills; and built links among key campus units and students. The Institute funded student participation in sustainability conferences and summer academies; recognized student contributions to sustainability education, research, and service; served as a clearinghouse for relevant educational and research opportunities; and contributed sustainability-related expertise to courses, residential education, graduate student research groups, and undergraduate student groups through guest lectures and workshops.
To address the need to build a stronger and more resilient community of sustainability students and sustainability oriented co-curricular clubs at UC Irvine, the Environment Institute incubated a student-led Global Sustainability Resource Center. In Fall 2012, ONE EARTH, the predecessor of GSRC, hosted a series of planning meetings with student leaders on campus to better understand student needs and to build a structure to support them. GSRC is shaped by the input from students, guided by the support of staff, and modeled after many of existing sustainability resource centers at other University of California campuses.