Penn State to Host Environmental Awakening Event

April 24, 2009

Symposium will encourage and foster community discussions on sustainability and more

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa., April 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Penn State will host a free public event to raise awareness and inspire action on some of the greatest challenges facing the world today. The program, called Awakening the Dreamer, Changing the Dream, will take place on Sunday, May 3, 2009, from 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on the lower level of Medlar Field at Lubrano Park at University Park.

Awakening the Dreamer is an initiative that encourages people to get together to “bring forth an environmentally sustainable, socially just and spiritually fulfilling human presence on this planet,” according to organizers. To date, millions of people across the globe have participated in Awakening the Dreamer symposiums.

“If we work together, we will come up with exactly what we need to do to create a sustainable future for all life. Together we are a genius,” said Lynn Twist, co-founder of the Pachamama Alliance — the organization behind the symposium.

Through expertly-crafted video segments featuring progressive visionaries like green jobs pioneer Van Jones, eco-activist Julia Butterfly Hill, combined with live interactive, heart-centered experiences led by trained volunteer facilitators, the symposium offers a hopeful vision of economic, environmental, social and spiritual issues.

“Here at Penn State, we’re doing many commendable things in terms of alternative energy research and responsible stewardship of our buildings and land,” noted Nancy Franklin, director the Penn State Outreach Energy and the Environment committee. “One way we can really build on that is by reaching out to be more inclusive of the community with events like this one.”

State College resident Georgia Abbey is serving as one of the local volunteer facilitators for the event. “I love the way the symposium illustrates the interconnectedness of issues that aren’t always perceived as related to one another,” said Abbey. “If everyone who attends walks away with one new idea for making some kind of personal change, it will add up to a real impact on our community that will ripple out to the rest of the world.”

Myra Jackson, of Upward Spiral Communications in San Diego, will perform Master of Ceremonies duty at the event. Jackson has been presenting symposiums in Washington, D.C. recently, drawing participants from an uncommonly diverse variety of organizations. “From the Pentagon to PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), this symposium is bringing people together in an exciting, dynamic new way that we’ve never really seen before,” said Jackson.

Opening and closing ceremonies for the symposium will be performed by internationally celebrated environmental economist and global human rights advocate Dr. Alfredo Sfeir-Younis. Sfeir-Younis will also present a free public talk entitled “Spiritual Entrepreneurship: A Blueprint for Corporate Enlightenment,” from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday, May 4 at Penn State’s Innovation Park.

Three units at Penn State are hosting the local version of the symposium: the University’s Outreach Energy and Environment Committee, Office of Physical Plant, and Center for Sustainability.

Attendance is free, but participants must register in advance at http://www.AwakenPSU.org online.

Penn State Outreach serves more than 5 million people each year, delivering more than 2,000 programs to people in all 67 Pennsylvania counties, all 50 states and 80 countries worldwide.

SOURCE Penn State University Office of Outreach

Source: newswire

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