Students Shined at the UN Climate Change Mock Event

By Natalia Arias, DIG's Program Manager

On December 5, 2015 Dream in Green joined the Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of ScienceBreakthrough Miami and the University of Miami to host The World Climate Project at the former Frost Museum of Science in Coconut Grove. Middle and high school students from Miami-Dade County engaged in role-playing activities simulating the United Nations Conference on Climate Change (or COP21) that took place in Paris from November 30th through December 11, 2015. The initiative, launched by the White House, provided resources to organizations to confidently lead people in thought-provoking exercises focused on climate change.

20151205_111259Over 200 students experienced what it is like to negotiate a climate deal in an effort to stabilize global average temperatures from increasing more than 2 degrees Celsius (or 3.6 Fahrenheit). Participants were grouped in 15 teams each representing countries from around the world.  Their mission was to find ways to limit global warming and encourage other countries and regions to support their proposal.  Students from Frost Science’s Upward Bound program and Breakthrough Miami’s StarBot Academy participated in the negotiations component of the exercise.  While fourteen middle and high school students, members of school Green Teams participating in the Dream in Green Academy, acted as mentors and hosted a ‘genius’ bar, to provide guidance to the groups.  Students from Dream in Green’s schools including Miami Palmetto Senior High, Palmer Trinity School, Miami Country Day, Hialeah Gardens Senior High, Air Base K-8 Academy, Palmetto Middle and Blessed Trinity School, shined as they guided discussions and negotiations based on their knowledge of socio-economic and environmental issues in developed and developing countries.  Graduate students from the University of Miami were also present to assist and provide support to students during the negotiations.20151205_113133

The event was a great opportunity for participating students to make the connection between what they learn through Dream in Green’s programs in the classroom and how they can make a difference once they are out in the real world. “The success of the event was marked by the layers of collaboration formed by four dynamic organizations who effectively worked together over the course of two months, keeping student involvement at the center of the initiative,” said Karla Utting, Executive Director of Dream in Green.

 

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