When it comes to private colleges it’s not so surprising to find a place like the tiny College of the Atlantic that makes sustainability the centerpiece of the education offered to the student body.
But what about at a public university in the middle of the Hamptons?
Well, that’s precisely the approach SUNY Stony Brook has taken, opting to turn a one-time artist colony with a colonial past that has also served as Southampton College into a part of Stony Brook that makes sustainability the cornerstone of learning.
Using an interdisciplinary approach, the campus groups faculty members not by discipline but around the various pieces to sustainability with which their classes will find focus.
And the main drive is to enable students to find new ways of problem solving in whatever field they choose to enter, as Shirley Strum Kenny, president of Stony Brook points out the simple fact that sustainability will be the key focus of the 21st century, and we can’t agree more wholeheartedly if we tried.
Strum Kenny admits they’ll be modeling to a degree on the new sustainability focus at Arizona State University, which is another program in public education being closely watched across the nation while other such centers of higher learning consider their own prospects for such an endeavor.
Currently, there are just 350 students expected for the fall, but school officials hope to build the program to 2,000 within five years. So as a life long Long Islander and Stony Brook Alum let me throw in my pitch here for those who would consider the program. There are few places as outstanding to live and learn as Long Island, and there’s no doubt that SUNY Stony Brook is among the finest public universities in America.
Perhaps both you and this new campus are the perfect fit for one another? It sounds like a tremendous opportunity for many.