Leadership training for students who are passionate about social and environmental justice.
The INVST Community Leadership Program's Summer Learning Experiences are life-changing.
Our Climate Justice Summer offers students a unique opportunity to travel together for a month and learn first-hand about environmental justice.
The Climate Justice Summer begins with a wilderness adventure in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains, where students develop a connection with the natural world. From there, students go to Paonia, Colorado with INVST grad Jeff Schwartz and his family at Delicious Orchards, and they learn and serve at Thistle Whistle Farm, an organic farm. They also hear the industry perspective on energy production, visiting Arch Coal and the Oxbow Coal Mine, and they hear about the economic benefits of extraction for rural communities.
Exploring energy issues contextualizes their visit to the Diné (or Navajo) Nation in Northeastern Arizona. On the reservation, INVST students learn about the social and environmental impacts of the coal mining industry on indigenous people and places. In Piñon, AZ, they volunteer with the Black Mesa Water Coalitiion, a youth-led grassroots organization. They also visit a generating station in Page, Arizona where they have the opportunity to see how energy and power are produced from coal. In Northern New Mexico, students stay at Casa Taos, a retreat center for activists, and they meet INVST co-founder and eco-feminist Gaia Mika, while experiencing first-hand some more sustainable ways of living and working the earth. They also learn about water issues and acequias.
Finally, the month ends in Colorado’s capitol city, where INVST students have the opportunity to engage elected political officials including Steve Fenberg, Joe Salazar, Michael Bennet, Alice Madden and Edie Hooton. INVST students speak with coal industry lobbysists, as well as Colorado's sustainability leaders. Throughout the month, the INVST students consider how energy and the US economy interact. Students look for innovative solutions to complex environmental and social problems.
The Climate Justice Summer with INVST is an unforgettable learning journey.
On the Economic Justice Summer, students have the opportunity to learn about immigration, documentation, the sanctuary movement, labor justice, and economic justice.
Beginning in 2017, our Economic Justice Summer curriculum will evolve into a travel opportunity that affords INVST students the chance to learn about the most pressing problems and solutions facing us as a global community: human migration, push - pull across borders, and economic justice. We will travel from Boulder, CO to Lawrence, Kansas where we will learn about community organizing in a rural setting, then students will go on to Chicago, Illinois where they will stay with host families in the North Chicago neighborhood of Albany Park, with our host organization Mexico Solidarity Network. INVST students will learn about the sanctuary movement to protect undocumented families from deportation; grassroots organizing for justice on issues related to fair wages; access to affordable housing, healthcare and immigration reform. Then we will go on to Detroit, Michigan to visit with INVST's long-time partners at the Boggs Center to Nurture Community Leadership, as well as allied organizations working on economic justice, with a focus on race and class. Students will then travel to Omaha, Nebraska to learn about a meat packing plant that deported immigrant workers en masse, just ten years ago, and they will investigate the current employment opportunities in the agricultural and meat packing industries. Who is creating jobs in the US? Who are those jobs for? Finally, the Economic Justice Summer will end in Denver where students will learn about recent immigrants to the US, refugee resettlement programs, and they will visit a private facility that detains individuals who are awaiting deportation hearings. We will also meet with activist organizations in Denver that are calling for immigration reform and justice for our undocumented Coloradoans. Finally, we will meet with legislators whose political approaches to leadership on these issues and topics they will share with the INVST students. This will be a memorable and significant summer learning journey focused on human rights and social and economic justice.
INVST has been offering summer travel for 26 years and we do change our curriculum from time-to-time, in order to make sure we are exposing our learners to the most pressing current issues. We are very enthusiastic about this new summer curriculum for INVST students!