Environmental Leadership Seminar

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Environmental Leadership (EL) is a non-credit component of the Arava Institute’s academic studies program. This seminar will explore the concept of Environmental Leadership through a range of sessions and workshops held throughout the semester, combining theoretical learning, skill building workshops, and hands on project-based learning to develop students’ leadership potential.  

This semester, EL will offer two tracks, highlighting the interplay between individual action and large scale institutional change as two important and complementary tactics for finding real solutions to today’s environmental crisis.  Students will be asked to choose a track where they wish to develop their personal leadership skills. Throughout the semester, there will be a number of sessions where both tracks meet together.

The Sustainable Living Track will feature hands-on projects around campus.  Each two hour session will include one hour theoretical/discussion based exploration of a topic and one hour of hands-on projects around campus.  Each session will be student led, planned and designed in cooperation with the EL Facilitator.  Topics will include organic gardening and compost, zero waste, mud building, and more.  Students who wish to explore a topic and/or work on a project beyond the framework of the EL session will receive guidance and mentorship from the EL facilitator.

The Environmental Diplomacy and Social Entrepreneurship Track will build skills and provide tools for activism, entrepreneurship, and environmental and civic diplomacy in collaboration with the Track II Forum and other Institute Alumni in relevant fields.  Using real, on the ground case studies, students will engage in theoretical exploration to develop their diplomacy skills and knowledge and open the door for future collaboration and participation in the Arava Institute’s Track II Forum.  Students may also be provided with opportunities to sit in on Track II Environmental Forum meetings and workshops, deepening their understanding of diplomatic processes.

Additionally, students will explore the basics of campaign building, working together with cross-border partners, and developing business models, as well have opportunities for practical work to develop their own ideas with the support and mentorship of Alumni Facilitators.

EL is an elective element of the Arava Institute’s academic program.  Students who participate in 80% or more of the EL Seminar will receive a Certificate of Environmental Leadership from AIES.