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    Nicole Koedyker: Q & A with Drexel’s Sustainability Lady

    Nicole Koedyker - Green Philly lady week!This week Green Philly Blog is interviewing some of Philadelphia’s women sustainability leaders in honor of closing out March as International Women’s History Month. Some of the women are well-known in our city, and some are a little more under the radar. Our interview for today is with Drexel Senior and Drexel’s (only environmental group) Sierra Club President, Nicole Koedyker!

    We first noticed Nicole Koedyker on our Facebook, Twitter & blog comments with her green wit & knowledge. When we attended a Sierra Club meeting at Drexel, we previewed first hand how she combined a mix of green ‘lessons’, local events and motivating eco-curious students to get involved in Meatless Monday, Earth week events & a clothing swap on campus.

    As a Drexel Senior majoring in international business & economics, this lady stays active in the college sustainability scene. Her missions include working student groups to divest from fossil fuels from the endowment, ban bottled water, and encouraging Drexel to complete the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education’s Sustainability Tracking and Assessment Rating System. On a personal level, she’s very likable. Her cat Meowies would be Pounce DeLeon’s BFF, and we love her bike & spin class teaching enthusiasm. Let’s get to our interview with Nicole!

    Green Philly Blog: Sustainability means something different to everyone. When did sustainability become important for you?

    Nicole Koedyker: I grew up in Tucson, AZ and spent a lot of time outside in my childhood. My dad owned a cattle ranch in the mountains and I loved playing with all our animals (goats, cows, chickens, horses, dogs, cats, etc.) so I’ve always had a natural connection to the outdoors, like most should. So when it came to applying for college, I knew I wanted to major to aim my educational efforts to help preserve the environment. I didn’t know very much in high school but entering college, I learned the severity of our issue at hand and I felt that I am one of the people who needs to dedicate my life to fix ing our wrongs.

    GPB: Interesting background! I’m very jealous of the goats, cow and chicken play time. Let’s discuss the present – How did you get involved as Drexel Sierra Club president?

    Nicole Koedyker: I went to one or two Drexel Sierra Club meetings as a freshmen but didn’t really get involved until sophomore year when I made some friends in the group. The president was about to graduate and was looking for a successor and no one else stepped up, so I did – And I’m so happy. Being able to lead by inspiration and example for the campus has been such a great learning experience about human nature. It’s been especially interesting to observe and influence my generation’s connection with environmentalism and these issues. Everyone has a place in sustainability, most just don’t know it yet. I enjoy helping people find something they’re passionate about as much as I am.

    GPB: That’s awesome. You’ve made great progress at Drexel so far. What’s your biggest green goal moving forward?

    Nicole Koedyker: My biggest green goal is to educate and engage as many people as I can about the various issues we face with climate change whether it’s talking to my peers, company employees, CEOs, government, etc. Our situation effects everyone and we need measurable steps for all of us to take as individuals, organizations, businesses, communities, and governments to get out of this mess and see progress.

    GPB: Great Point. We do all need to work together on this mission. How do you plan on incorporating your green goal with your post-graduation plans?

    Nicole Koedyker: I’ll graduate from Drexel with my Bachelor’s of Science in international business & economics, so I’d like to go to graduate school to get my dual MBA/MPA in sustainability or sustainable management. I would like to continue my time almost as an amateur sustainability consultant at Drexel for administration and facilities. Starting off by staying in higher education sustainability would help me eventually to go on to business and corporate sustainability consulting.

    GPB: Ambitious goals! We’re glad you’re more planned out than my post-grad plan, which was “Get job.” 😉 OK, so if you had one green superpower, what would it be?

    Nicole Koedyker: My green superpower would be persuasion to be able to go up to the CEO of Exxon and say “you’re causing irreparable problems for animals, people, and the environment. You should stop” and he’d say “yes, I agree, I will.”

    GPB: Ah, if only it could be that easy… 😉

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    Julie Hancher

    About Julie Hancher

    Julie Hancher is Editor-in-Chief of Green Philly, sharing her expertise of all things sustainable in the city of brotherly love. She enjoys long walks in the park with local beer and greening her travels, cooking & cat, Sir Floofus Drake.

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