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Published on November 7th, 2012 | by Mace & Crown Administrator

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Greenpeace: Learn how to be an Activist

Some students follow the flock, but others like to cry wolf.  Those who fit in with the latter may be interested in a new opportunity at Old Dominion University.

Greenpeace USA is looking for students interested in volunteer opportunities and hunger to learn organization, activism and advocacy skills.

The Greenpeace Semester is a “high-intensity training course where students learn everything that they will need to know to launch effective campaigns,” said Erin Fagan, Greenpeace campus and training coordinator at Old Dominion University.

Students will work with a global environmental organization and learn what it takes to advocate eco-friendly initiatives and experience what becoming an environmental leader is all about.

“The program combines intensive action workshops, group projects, and real experience working on important issues in different communities, working side-by-side with Greenpeace staff,” said Fagan.

Fagan became an activist three years ago on a visit to Washington D.C. to see a friend.  when she ran into students with the Greenpeace Semester, she was recruited to help with Hands Across the Sand at the White House.  The experience left her insatiable.

Fagan started attending Greenpeace events and was soon invited to become a trainer at the Greenpeace Activist Summit. The Activist Summit is a four day event where activists from the region come together for intensive activist training sessions.  Many attending students go on to hold positions within their student networks, as campus coordinators, lead activists and board members.

Soon, Fagan found herself on the Greenpeace Student Board, only offered to the top six student activists around the country. Now, as campus and training coordinator at ODU, she has been focusing her efforts on recruiting new activists.

“It’s important to me to build a strong, stable base of student activists,” said Fagan. “It’s very important for students to realize that Greenpeace is in no way just for one type of student.  Anyone…who is just passionate about activism and advocacy can easily find their place with Greenpeace.”

Greenpeace internships can be found in numerous major cities around the country, such as Washington D.C., San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles and New York City.

Internships focus on a number of issues, such as promoting solutions to the global warming crisis, stopping the destruction of ancient forests, empowering consumers and shareholders to hold corporate polluters accountable, protecting endangered species, and of course, learning valuable leadership and grassroots skills, such as methods of non-violent creative confrontation, campaign planning, recruiting, canvassing, petitioning, event planning, and so much more.

By being given the opportunity to strategically plan a real campaign, lobby congressmen on Capitol Hill, discuss the philosophy behind using non-violence to change the world, and joining in on conversations with well-known activists, climate scientists, biologists, and documentary filmmakers, interns and volunteers with Greenpeace are able to take part in a life-changing experience, while changing the world.

Interested students need to act fast by contacting Fagan at efaga001@odu.edu or by phone: 757-803-3001

Links for the online issue:

Greenpeace Student Network: www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/getinvolved/get-involved/student-network/

Greenpeace Student Board: www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/getinvolved/get-involved/student-network/greenpeace-student-board/

Greenpeace Campus Coordinators: www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/getinvolved/get-involved/student-network/run-a-greenpeace-campaign-on-y/

Greenpeace Semester: www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/getinvolved/get-involved/semester/

Info on Greenpeace leadership positions: www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/getinvolved/get-involved/student-network/leadership/

By: Pamula Floyd and Derek Page

Staff Writer and News Editor

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