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Book cover: Communities in Crisis: Student Voices on Climate Change

Credit: Credit: © Penn State is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 

Dutton Institute strives to build partnerships with faculty to collaborate on notable projects

October 17th, 2023

by April Millet

A successful partnership between April Millet, Dutton learning designer and associate teaching professor, and Tim Bralower, teaching professor of Geoscience, led to the development of an e-Book using the Pressbooks platform. Communities in Crisis: Student Voices on Climate Change is a collection of short essays describing how climate change is impacting communities around the world. The goal of the project, which wrapped up in August 2023, was to preserve and share the best examples of student writing selected from thousands of Earth 103N’s capstone submissions while giving undergraduate students the opportunity to publish. The essays, all written between Spring 2021 and Summer 2023, required students to research and write six 300-500 word pieces, each about a different community of their choosing. For each essay, students were required to identify and research a community that is threatened by climate change, detail the threat and why the community is vulnerable, explain what the forecasted impacts on the community are and share potential solutions for mitigating the threat. 

The book includes essays that cover the globe. Over 1400 essays written by nearly 500 undergraduate students from across Penn State are organized into 12 topical chapters including drought, wildfires, heatwaves, hurricanes, ocean acidification, sea level rise, etc. As the student editor of the book, Halina Dingo, an undergraduate student at the time, was instrumental in the development of the project. An open education resource, Communities in Crisis is available online

Communities in Crisis: Student Voices on Climate Change