Climate Change, Climate Anxiety, and A Call for Justice and Action


For: All Educators


Monday, October 26, 2020

8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.





Our current K - 12 students face a world of uncertainty and turmoil like no other student bodies have experienced. Even before facing a global pandemic redefining what school looks like and current events of incredible weight, climate change has been a real and pressing issue that these students will need to address in their lifetime. As they watched Australia burn in early 2020 and witness natural disasters abound, the realness has manifested in overwhelming anxiety of a future our current students are destined to inherit and a global wellness they must feel equipped to support. During this day-long experience with some of the world’s most renown climate scientists, we will discuss the information needed to understand climate change, tools to navigate climate anxiety imbued in our students, and how we will command a call to action and on behalf of justice in our curricula, school cultures, and for our students’ wellbeing.



$100 per registrant, Member Schools

$200 per registrant, NonMember Schools



About the Featured Speakers:

Dr. James Hansen, formerly Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, is an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University’s Earth Institute, where he directs the Program on Climate Science, Awareness and Solutions. He was trained in physics and astronomy in the space science program of Dr. James Van Allen at the University of Iowa. His early research on the clouds of Venus helped identify their composition as sulfuric acid. Since the late 1970s, he has focused his research on Earth’s climate, especially human-made climate change. Dr. Hansen is best known for his testimony on climate change to congressional committees in the 1980s that helped raise broad awareness of the global warming issue. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1995 and was designated by Time Magazine in 2006 as one of the 100 most influential people on Earth. He has received numerous awards including the Carl-Gustaf Rossby and Roger Revelle Research Medals, the Sophie Prize and the Blue Planet Prize. Dr. Hansen is recognized for speaking truth to power, for identifying ineffectual policies as greenwash, and for outlining actions that the public must take to protect the future of young people and other life on our planet.

In addition to practicing integrative psychotherapy, Dr. Leslie Davenport brings the role of psychology into interdisciplinary dialogues that advance creative and effective solutions to the practice of medicine and climate change solutions. Leslie is a founding member of the Institute for Health & Healing, one of the nations’ first and largest hospital-based integrative medicine programs. Her 25 years of medical experience developing an empowering and collaborative approach to resolving crises has informed her climate psychology model. Leslie’s years of clinical experience culminated in the publication of Healing and Transformation through Self-Guided Imagery,Transformative Imagery: Cultivating the Imagination for Healing, Change, and Growth, and Emotional Resiliency in the Era of Climate Change. She was also a reviewer with the American Psychological Association, EcoAmerica and Climate for Health to help shape the document: “Mental Health and Our Changing Climate: Impacts, Implications, and Guidance.” Currently she is in an advisory role with Project Inside Out, exploring the crossroads of psychology and climate change. She has also served as Editorial Consultant to Aspen Publishers for their book, Holistic Health Promotion and Complementary Therapies: A Resource for Integrative Practice. She contributed an essay to Parker Palmer’s book, The Heart of Higher Education, and also wrote a series of articles on wellness themes for Huffington Post. Leslie has extensive teaching experience at universities including Mills College, University of San Francisco, California State University Hayward, Holy Names University, Five Branches University, and she served as core faculty with the Transpersonal Psychology Graduate Program at John F. Kennedy University.

Melissa Miles is the Executive Director for the New Jersey Environmental Justice Alliance, the only New Jersey statewide organization whose mission is focused on environmental justice and also the only New Jersey statewide organization that addresses environmental issues whose leadership is a majority People Of Color. Melissa served for more than seven years as the Environmental Justice Manager for the Newark based environmental justice organization, Ironbound Community Corporation (ICC). Ms. Miles is a grassroots activist and organizer living in an Environmental Justice Community in Newark, New Jersey. Long considered the regions’ dumping ground, and called a “sacrifice zone” and a “waste-shed” by advocates, it is fertile soil for seeding activism and growing visionaries. Melissa is one of many there awakened to the environmental justice struggles to support the birth of a new community rooted in a place where people can live, work, learn, and play in health and harmony. “I wasn’t born, I was grown” is Melissa’s personal tagline and speaks to her entry into environmental justice advocacy, which was the result of the political and popular education she received from community organizers at ICC. Melissa earned her MA in Anthropology from The New School. She is a part of several national coalitions including the Climate Justice Alliance, Moving Forward Network, The Coalition for Healthy Ports and the international coalitions, The Movement of People Affected By Dams (MAB) and the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives. She is also part of the New Jersey Environmental Justice Advisory Council, responsible for advising state agencies including the Department of Environmental Protection on issues of Environmental Justice. Her “expertise” is rooted in her lived experience and her commitment to making sure that people at the frontlines are the protagonists in the struggle for their future.

Carrie Ferraro, Ph.D., Associate Director, Coastal Climate Risk & Resilience Initiative, Institute of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences and Department of Marine and Coastal Sciences, School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. Carrie received her Ph.D. from Rutgers in Oceanography in 2010, studying the active microbial population in aquatic environments using molecular markers. After graduating, she began working with researchers to communicate their science through the construction and implementation of innovative and effective Broader Impact statements that fulfill National Science Foundation requirements. Through this effort, she created high quality educational materials that fostered connections between students, faculty, K-12 teachers, and researchers. Currently, Carrie works with the Rutgers Raritan River Consortium (R3C) to create opportunities for students and researchers to access and study the evolving status of the Raritan River. She is also the Associate Director for Coastal Climate Risk & Resilience (C2R2), an NSF Research Traineeship (NRT) working to prepare the workforce that will build coastal resilience in the face of climate risks.

Patricia Findley, DrPH, MSW, Associate Professor of Social Work and MSW Director. Her research interests include chronic illness, physical disability, interprofessional health education, disaster preparedness and response, and cancer survivorship. She explores both physical and mental health issues, as well as trauma issues in a variety of populations including resiliency in response to climate change. With funding from USAID, she has collaborated with American, Israeli, and Palestinian colleagues on educating students and mental health professionals on disaster preparedness and response.

Marjorie Kaplan, Associate Director, Rutgers Climate Institute. Dr. Kaplan’s work for more than 35 years has been at the nexus of environmental science, natural resources, and human and ecological health at the federal and state level, for a major utility, and two international consulting firms. At Rutgers, she manages the portfolio of the Rutgers Climate Institute, working across the University in developing and managing research, outreach and education on understanding the climate system and the impacts of a changing climate across the natural, social and policy sciences. Her own work includes climate change and public health, emissions reduction options, equity, greenhouse gas emissions inventories, resiliency planning and policy, extension education, and carbon sequestration . She is Rutgers liaison to, and participates in the research of, the USDA Northeast Climate Hub. She co-facilitates and conducts analyses on behalf of the New Jersey Climate Change Alliance, a nonpartisan network of organizations that share the goal of advancing science-informed strategies to address climate change in New Jersey. During her time in government she managed New Jersey’s inaugural Office of Climate and Energy and its initial participation in the RGGI program, as well as developed science and research related to natural resources, changing landscapes, and human health risk. She holds a Masters and Doctorate (with distinction) in Public Health from Columbia University and a Bachelors Degree in Natural Resources from Cornell University.

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MEMBER INFORMATION: If your school is a member of NJAIS, upon receipt of your registration, we will automatically generate an invoice and send it to your Business Office. Payment is not required at the time of your registration. Your school will have 30 days to pay the invoice.

NON-MEMBER INFORMATION: If you are an employee of an organization or school that is NOT a member of NJAIS and you are registering for this workshop, please provide the company/school address. We will automatically generate an invoice and send it to your Business Office. Payment is not required at the time of your registration. Your school will have 30 days to pay the invoice. Thank you.

Cancellation Policy:

Registration fees will only be refunded if NJAIS is notified of your cancellation two weeksprior to the program. You may transfer your registration to a colleague in your school at no cost.