Environmental Core holds rally for solar power use

first_imgThe USC Environmental Core, also known as E-Core, hosted a student rally advocating for the use of solar panels on campus Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. in Hahn Plaza.The event began with a speech from Keoki Kakigi, a first-year masters student in green technologies program and a leader in E-Core’s Go Solar campaign. Following this introduction, students assembled in Hahn Plaza and began chanting in support of solar power for USC. Phrases used by the group included “This is the hour for solar power!” and “Be bright! Use the light!” The rally concluded when Kakigi delivered a letter from E-Core to the office of President C. L. Max Nikias, as well as a list of signatures from students in support of the Go Solar campaign.The Environmental Core’s goal for the Go Solar initiative is that 10 percent of USC’s energy will come from solar power in the near future, according to its website. Ideal locations to install solar panels on campus include the Galen Center, which features the University’s largest roof area and the upcoming USC Village, whose roofs will already be solar ready in compliance with LEED standards when construction ends.With approximately 284 days of full sunlight in Los Angeles each year, E-Core sees the implementation of solar panels on campus as an easy decision, offering a means of saving money in the long term while bolstering USC’s commitment to sustainability and environmentalism with tangible efforts, which would also serve to enhance the University’s international reputation and appeal to incoming students.“Climate change is most imminent threat to the world, and we would love to see USC, which projects itself as a cutting-edge, world-class university solving the world’s biggest problems, do its part to help mitigate the biggest problem facing us today,” Kakigi said.In spite of these advantages, Kakigi said that the administration has noted several drawbacks to the plans advocated by the Go Solar campaign. A major concern of university officials is the aesthetic problems posed by the panels themselves, which many think would detract from the campus’s collegiate Gothic architectural style. Furthermore, the estimated five years it would take for the solar panels to pay for themselves is too long for many administrators, who have also found it difficult to attract donors for this project.Though Sustainability 2020 has stated its commitment to be more environmentally conscious willingness to consider solar power in the future, Kakigi said that many of the energy committee’s members are the same administrators who were opposed to the Go Solar campaign in the beginning, posing a potential obstacle for any substantial policy changes down the line.“We are not going to stand idle and hope that [administrators] change their minds,” Kakigi said. “Instead, we are going to try to be the change USC needs to install solar panels.”For many students, USC’s reluctance to participate in some environmental efforts is surprising, and they hope to see real progress being made to achieve sustainability goals moving forward.“The fact that none of our power comes from solar is kind of shocking to me,” said Woorin Lee, a freshman majoring in environmental science and health. “I think installing solar panels would also help to enhance our green image, especially considering recent global environmental movements in countries around the world. It’s a big issue, and we’re not taking part in it.”Ariel Marks, E-Core’s co-president, said he was pleased with the turnout they received for this rally and that he hopes to increase awareness about the Go Solar campaign on campus in the future.“We’re really trying to build student awareness and support,” Marks said. “Getting more students to support our cause is what will ultimately push this issue through administration.”last_img read more

Professor uses Afro-Latina identity to foster community at Price school, South LA

first_imgAdjunct professor La Mikia Castillo said it can be hard to find a space where she “fits in,” due to her Afro-Latina identity. Castillo works to bridge her two communities, since she thinks members of both face similar issues. (Sarah Johnson| Daily Trojan)Born and raised in South L.A., alumna and adjunct professor La Mikia Castillo strives to make a difference in communities in need by focusing on public policy and urban planning.“I grew up in a low-income community,” Castillo said. “It wasn’t until that I got to college when I realized that my community didn’t have access to the same resources as other communities.”Castillo received her bachelor’s degree from UC San Diego, where she said she noticed a stark contrast in access to resources among her peers.“When I began to see the disparities between what I had access to and what my friends from home had access to versus my peers in college, I realized that there was something wrong there and I wanted to change it,” she said. In college, Castillo learned that communities looked the way they do due to policies implemented by policymakers and urban planners, who decide which areas certain populations will be placed in. “I became a community organizer because I really wanted to work on organizing community members to learn what I had learned in college and use that information to change the community, to actually advocate for policies that would be positive for us,” Castillo said.As a graduate student at the Price School of Public Policy, Castillo founded the Black Student Association at Price after noticing that there was a need for black students to speak about issues that impact the black community. In addition, she was a board member of the Latino Student Association at Price.“[These groups] were very meaningful for me because as a person who identifies as black and Latina, sometimes it’s hard to find the space where I feel like I fit in, where I can be my whole self,” Castillo said. “I’ve always been involved in black student organizations and Latinx student organizations and then act as a bridge between them because I think that issues our communities face are so similar, that it makes sense for us to overlap and work together to address them through policy and planning,” Castillo recently worked as a national director at the National Foster Institute, where she worked on local, state and federal child welfare policies. She also helped empower foster youth by helping them understand how policy is created.  “I would bring foster youth from across the country to Washington D.C. to meet with their Congress members,” Castillo said. “They would shadow them to learn about how Congress works, and they would then tell their own personal stories about what their experiences were like in the foster care system … They would also make recommendations for how they can address those challenges through policy.” Currently, Castillo teaches both of Price’s undergraduate social innovation and graduate social context courses at Price. In both classes, Castillo allows students to work together to solve challenges through social innovations and hands-on activities. “I know that there’s so much for [students] to contribute to the class, so if you would like to lead a session in the class, I want you to take the lead on that,” Castillo said. “I absolutely love when students take that opportunity to lead, and I think it helps them feel empowered that you have something to bring and something to offer, and your peers can learn from you as well.”This story is part of a mini-series highlighting Latinos at USC. It ran every week during Hispanic Heritage Month, which ended Oct. 15.last_img read more

Six Nations 2019: Gregor Townsend has mixed feelings after loss to Wales

first_imgClinical Wales led 15-6 at the break, tries from Josh Adams and Jonathan Davies putting Wales on course to make it four wins in four matches.Scotland dominated the second half but only had a Graham try to show for its superiority as Wales dug in with its backs to the wall to stand on the verge of a Grand Slam, with Ireland to come in Cardiff on the final weekend. Related News Six Nations 2019: Ireland captain Rory Best set to retire after RWC 2019 “The players had to handle some things that went against them, injuries early on and reshuffling the backline and players out of position, but we showed what we were made of in that second half in terms of the rugby we want to play and in our character.”We had enough pressure in the second half to win. Strong defenses will force errors, but we forced a lot of penalties out of Wales.”I think [there were] five in the 22 that should normally lead to yellow cards with that pressure, but obviously we are very frustrated that didn’t happen.” Townsend was encouraged by a much-improved performance from his side but was left to reflect on what might have been after Scotland suffered its third loss in a row.FULL TIME | A win for Wales. A compelling game of rugby comes to an end as the visitors secure a victory by 7 points. #AsOne pic.twitter.com/8GppgtfESQ— Scottish Rugby (@Scotlandteam) 9 March 2019″There is partly frustration but a lot of pride,” he told BBC Sport. “We gave a true picture of what we are capable of.center_img Six Nations 2019: Wales edges Scotland to set up shot at Grand Slam Coach Gregor Townsend said there was “partly frustration but a lot of pride” for injury-hit Scotland after it was beaten 18-11 Saturday by Six Nations leader Wales at Murrayfield.Scotland lost its entire back three of Tommy Seymour, Blair Kinghorn and try-scorer Darcy Graham in a tight contest, with Stuart Hogg already missing.last_img read more