Skip to Content
Alumni spotlights and updates

Alumni spotlights and updates

Alumni spotlights and updates

Success stories

Sustainability alumna discusses Audubon Arizona report about economic importance of waterways

April 10, 2019

Haley Paul sitting at desk on show Arizona PBSSchool of Sustainability alumna Haley Paul, who now works as a policy manager for Audubon Arizona, talked on Arizona PBS about the organization’s new report detailing the value of waterways to Arizona's economy. According to the report, water-based recreational activities in Arizona bring $13.5 billion to the economy and create 114,000 jobs.

The report aimed to establish a baseline of information and show how important water-based recreation is as an industry in Arizona.

Continue Reading

School of Sustainability alumna wins award from ASU's Graduate College

April 8, 2019

Ashley Quay recieving Knowledge Impact Mobilization AwardAshley Quay, who graduated from the School of Sustainability's Executive Master of Sustainability Leadership program in January 2019, was one of two winners of the Knowledge Impact Mobilization Awards presented by the Graduate College at Arizona State University. These awards recognize graduate students who are translating research into real-world impact.

Quay's project, “Positively Impactful,” is a social-media campaign and website that highlights changes people are making to be more sustainable. “The doom-and-gloom approach is leaving people disheartened, overwhelmed and stagnant to change,” Quay said, so she used what she learned during her studies to take a more positive, inspirational approach.

Sustainability PhD candidate accepts professorship at University of Redlands

March 28, 2019

Bethem-Jacob-SchoolOfSustainability-Headshots  School of Sustainability, fall welcome headshot  Jacob BethemJacob Bethem, PhD candidate in Arizona State University’s School of Sustainability, only recently defended his PhD dissertation but he has already accepted an offer to teach sustainable business courses at the University of Redlands in California. Bethem will be a Visiting Assistant Professor of Sustainable Business for the 2019-2020 school year.

After completing more than 40 job applications, Bethem became a top-five candidate in at least three schools’ faculty searches, but selected the University of Redlands for its mix of management and ethics courses and emphasis on active learning. He attributes his success in attaining this position to strong recommendations from his instructors and supervising researchers as well as experience gained through various research opportunities provided by ASU in consultative roles for corporate and government executive clients.

Continue Reading

Meet sustainability alumnus Garrett Wong

March 26, 2019

Student wearing ASU shirt standing in front of cactiWith so many directions one can take in a sustainability career, Garrett Wong wasn’t sure where he would land. But after a series of experiences during his time as an Arizona State University School of Sustainability student, Wong realized he wanted to apply sustainability to the sports industry.

As he said in his interview below, sports involves a wide variety of people from all walks of life: “What better way for sustainability practices to touch all of these individuals than in a space where leadership and teamwork both on and off the field are the driving message?”

Continue Reading

Cultivating growth and experience: The Farm at South Mountain internship program

February 12, 2019

Matthew Waldman headshotOriginally studying to become a civil engineer, Matthew Waldman was so inspired by a sustainable neighborhoods urban development class that he changed his major to sustainability at Arizona State University.

As a School of Sustainability student, Waldman was able to participate in first-hand experiential learning opportunities that allowed him to serve the community while gaining real-world experience. He said his most meaningful opportunity was his internship at The Farm at South Mountain.

Continue Reading

Meet sustainability alumnus Nathan Gassmann

February 11, 2019

Nathan GassmannIt took 10 years for Nathan Gassmann to get his bachelor’s degree — the “scenic route,” as he called it. But finally getting that diploma in 2014 from the School of Sustainability at Arizona State University was the result of a lot of hard work, persistence, and balancing responsibilities as a parent, student and employee.

Gassmann recently landed a job as Subway’s manager of global sustainability, and he said he’s excited to enact change at a large scale. His advice for all Sun Devils is to challenge themselves.

Continue Reading

Alumna lands job as sustainability manager

January 23, 2019

Debbie NamugayiCongratulations to Arizona State University School of Sustainability alumna Debbie Namugayi, who in early 2019 started work as Eastern Kentucky University’s new sustainability manager. Namugayi earned her master's degree in sustainability in 2014, and has a history of connecting sustainability with higher education through prior positions at Bucknell University and the University of Maryland.

On top of accomplishment, Namugayi recently acted as the master of ceremonies for the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education 2018 conferences.

Photo courtesy of Amanda Cain, Eastern Kentucky University

Meet Executive Master of Sustainability Leadership alumna Julie Hopwood

November 29, 2018

Julie HopwoodYou might think that a mostly-online graduate program would be impersonal. But, as Arizona State University alumna Julie Hopwood tells it, that’s far from the case with the Executive Master of Sustainability Leadership from the School of Sustainability. As she described in her Q&A below, Hopwood was impressed with the emphasis on both personal and professional development throughout the one-year program. Plus, she became quite close with her cohort and still talks to them regularly.

“Whether we were seeking professional clarification, direction and impact in our current positions, immediate career advancement, transition to a new industry and/or the elusive dream of combining our personal and professional passions, I truly believe that my fellow cohort members and I graduated from the EMSL program feeling that our mission was, and can always be, accomplished,” Hopwood said.

In her Q&A, Hopwood — who is currently the associate vice president for business and auxiliary services at Ball State University, Indiana — discussed how she learned and grew as a sustainability leader through the EMSL.

Continue Reading

Meet sustainability alumna René Edde

November 14, 2018

René Edde stands near outdoor stairwayRené Edde, senior business development manager of coffee for Fair Trade USA, initially thought that the Executive Master of Sustainability Leadership might just be a good resume builder. But it turned out to be a transformational experience.

“I grew into my shoes as a leader,” Edde said. “I learned to embrace my authentic self both in my career and in my personal life. I began to believe that I had the power to make a difference with every decision that I make.”

In the following Q&A, Edde explains what she learned from the EMSL, how she balanced classwork with her career, and how the EMSL has given her the knowledge and confidence to pursue her dreams.

What was your “aha” moment when you realized you wanted to study sustainability?

Continue Reading

Meet sustainability alumnus Tyler Sytsma

November 6, 2018

Tyler SytsmaTyler Sytsma has not one but two degrees from Arizona State University’s School of Sustainability — a bachelor’s degree and an Executive Master of Sustainability Leadership. He graduated with his EMSL in January 2016 and quickly landed a job as a sustainability coordinator for the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Sytsma answered a few questions for us about his journey in sustainability and his experience with the EMSL. Read his Q&A below.

What was your “aha” moment when you realized you wanted to study sustainability?

Continue Reading