ISU Student Teams Win Sustainable Futures Planning Contest

May 6th, 2002

AMES, Iowa - Students from Iowa State University have been selected to present their ideas on sustainability at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg in August. The summit is a follow-up to the Earth Summit held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.

The Iowa United Nations Association sponsored the competition and invited student teams from Iowa to submit plans to create a more sustainable Iowa. Twelve teams submitted proposals at the United Nations Annual Assembly at Iowa State. The winners were announced at the Sustainable Futures for Iowa Student Conference held at the University of Iowa on Earth Day. The five winning teams were all from Iowa State. Each team received $500 and an invitation to present its proposal at the World Summit on Sustainable Development to be held in Johannesburg Aug. 26 to Sept. 4.

The winning teams included students from the Student Organic Farm, the Soil and Water Conservation Club and a community and regional planning class on sustainable communities. Plans for a sustainable future included K-12 school gardens, student farms at colleges and universities and gardens managed by local governments and civic groups.

"Localized food systems have a number of substantial environmental and social benefits. We believe that our program would be a way to foster the development of these systems," said Pernell Plath, an Iowa State graduate student in agronomy from Pleasant Valley.

The Iowa United Nations Association will include the students' ideas in a report titled, A Sustainable Future for Iowa. The report will be submitted to national leaders and government officials and agencies in the United Nations.

The winning proposals and student teams included:

Creating Experiential Agricultural Education Opportunities: A Path to Developing Sustainable Food Systems in Iowa. Pernell Plath, a graduate student in sustainable agriculture from Pleasant Valley; Erin Tegtmeier, a graduate student in sustainable agriculture from Chicago; Brian Keehner, a senior in agronomy from Farmersburg; and Gina McAndrews, a doctoral research associate in agronomy from Ames.

Energizing Iowa: Communities Creating Sustainable Energy Systems. Lynn Laws, a senior in journalism and mass communication from Des Moines; Matthew Miller, a senior student in English from Ames; and Holly Killmer, a graduate student in community and regional planning from Ames.

The Future of Sustainable Transportation in Iowa. Margret Englesson, a senior in pre-landscape architecture from Ames; Jacob Gunia, a senior in mechanical engineering from Sioux City; Matt Jesson, a senior in construction engineering from Bettendorf; and Thomas Stout, a graduate student in civil and construction engineering from West Des Moines.

Iowa's Prairie Restoration: Sustainable Futures for Iowa. Jayma Appleby, a senior in agricultural education from Vinton; Courtney Babic, a senior in advertising from Naperville, Ill.; and Lisa Krogmeier, a junior in liberal studies from Ames.

A New Model for the Establishment of Wetlands for Treatment of Nitrate Based on Environmental Modeling and Stakeholder Involvement. Bradley Miller, a graduate student in botany from Ames; Andras Molnar, a graduate student in agricultural economics from Hungary; Nancy Bohl, a junior in agricultural education from New Richmond, Wis.; and Henna Chou, a senior in environmental science from Austin, Texas.


Tara Clapp, Design, (515) 294-7759

Barbara McManus, Communications Service, (515) 294-0707