UT Climate Leaders Program

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What is the Climate Leaders Program (Climate LEAP)?

Office of Sustainability launched the UT Climate Leaders Program in Fall 2022. The Climate Leaders Program (Climate LEAP) offers a cohort of eight to ten students hands-on, practical experience developing a greenhouse gas emissions reduction plan for an organization. Climate LEAP is a year-long, paid, internship program open to undergraduates of ALL majors.

For 2022-2023, the Climate LEAP cohort will be working with five UT Austin colleges to develop college-level greenhouse gas emissions reduction proposals. Students will work in interdisciplinary pairs with one student acting as a Climate Analyst and the other as a Climate Engagement Specialist. Each pair will work with a single college. Climate LEAP cohort meetings will include presentations, workshops, and discussions led by experts in diverse fields, providing students with the broad knowledge base needed to be successful as future sustainability and climate professionals. 

Thank you to President Hartzell, the University Budget Council, and the Green Fund for funding this new program.

Please contact climateleaders@austin.utexas.edu with any questions about the UT Climate Leaders Program. 

Application Information

Eligibility and application information can be found on the Application Information page. Applications for the 2022-23 cohort are closed.

2022-23 Climate Leaders

Chloe Ramirez

Chloé Dentis Ramirez

Role: Climate Engagement Specialist
Major: Government
Minors/Certificates: Environment & Sustainability BDP
Climate Dream Job: My dream environmental job is working in environmental law, either domestic or international!

Louis Diara

Louis Diara

Role: Climate Analyst
Major: Architectural Engineering
Minors/Certificates: Business Minor, Humanitarian Engineering Certificate
Climate Dream Job: My climate dream job is working for Buro Happold’s sustainability department because, as an architectural engineer, I believe that solving the climate crisis starts with changing how we design our buildings.

Anya Gandavadi

Anya Gandavadi

Role: Climate Engagement Specialist
Major: Environmental Science (Biology Track)
Minors/Certificates: Ethics & Leadership in Law, Policy, & Government BDP
Climate A-ha Moment: My climate a-ha moment was when the government declared beluga whales as endangered and at 6 years old, I could not understand how we got to the point where this creature was threatened and I decided I wanted to do whatever I could to help!

Julia Harris

Julia Harris

Role: Climate Analyst
Major: Environmental Engineering
Minors/Certificates: Leadership in Global Sustainability Minor
Climate Dream Job: My Climate dream job might be the Chief Sustainability Officer of larger company that has a high carbon footprint with the goal to reduce it as much as possible.

Cara Ingram

Cara Ingram

Role: Climate Analyst
Major: General Geology
Minors/Certificates: English Minor, Environment & Sustainability BDP
Climate A-ha Moment: I had always been raised to care about the planet, but the moment I witnessed firsthand the amount of harm being done on the bodies of water I grew up on, I knew I wanted to take as much action as I could in protecting them.

Vivian Nguyen

Vivian Nguyen

Role: Climate Engagement Specialist
Major: Public Relations
Minors/Certificates: Leadership in Global Sustainability Minor
Climate A-ha Moment: JacksGap, ran by Jack and Finn Harries, was a YouTube channel I loved watching in middle school. At that time, their content revolved around travel and them navigating how to use their platform positively. I rediscovered their channel out of boredom during Thanksgiving break and simply started watching their videos from start to recent. In recent years, Jack has shifted the content into climate activism, storytelling, and Earthrise Studio. His show, Seat at the Table, had just been released and I decided to give it a shot. I was in total awe in how filmmaking, communications, and the importance of creatives played such a large role in the climate crisis and breaking down climate solutions. There are so many different facets to supporting those doing good for the world and filmmaking was one I found to capture my interest in the issue.

Karla_Salazar

Karla Salazar

Role: Climate Engagement Specialist
Major: Environmental Science (Geography Track)
Minors/Certificates: Smart Cities BDP
Climate Hero: Berta Caceres. Caceres was a Honduran environmentalist and indigenous activist that led protests against an invasive hydroelectric dam project that could flood native lands and cut the water supply to hundreds of the Lenca people. Caceres was a champion of grassroots movements and her story reminds me of the urgency for environmentalism.

Mandy Tran

Mandy Tran

Role: Climate Analyst
Major: Environmental Science (Biology Track)
Minors/Certificates: Public Policy BDP
Climate Hero: Pattie Gonia (@pattiegonia) is a drag queen who promotes DEI, environmentalism, and climate action—I can only dream of multitasking as fiercely as her.

Fiona

Fiona Wyrtzen

Role: Climate Engagement Specialist
Major: Environmental Science (Biology Track)
Minors/Certificates: Informatics Minor, Evidence & Inquiry Certificate
Climate A-ha Moment: When I saw the data on how much carbon emissions go into food and meat production, I realized how difficult it was to ethically provide for our basic needs as humans and I knew that this was something I wanted to protect.

Samara Zuckerbrod

Samara Zuckerbrod

Role: Climate Analyst
Major: Sustainability Studies, English
Minors/Certificates: Business & Public Policy Certificate, Creative Writing Certificate
Climate Dream Job: Working as a policy officer for a think tank such as the Doughnut Economics Action Lab. In this role, I can help developing circular economic transition plans for cities while eating doughnuts.