100 Years of Sustainability Education

green-education-photoFor the past 4 ½ years, I’ve worked as an Urban Sustainability Agent with Pinellas County Extension. During this time, I implemented the Pinellas Energy Efficiency Project (PEEP) which focuses on educating residents about energy conservation behaviors and practices while providing access to energy saving devices. This is an ongoing program and more information can be found on this site.  The PEEP program has also hosted school competitions for elementary and middle schoolers’ to encourage an energy saving ethic. Additionally, PEEP delivers education for Pinellas County employees, offers an informative biennial Home Energy Symposium, and partners with local libraries and community centers to offer free energy education classes. 

As the county coordinator for the Sustainable Floridians SM training program, this new series uses a model similar to that of the renowned Master Gardener series. During the 6-week program, residents are educated about sustainability principles as well as Florida specific action areas where individual and collective efforts can save money while saving natural resources.

Another important aspect of my work in Pinellas County is my responsibility to support sustainable government operations and practices through employee education and engagement and the Green Local Government Certification program offered through the Florida Green Building Coalition. More information about the practices and policies that demonstrate Pinellas County’s green commitment can be found on the Green Pinellas website.

Sustainability education is certainly not new to Extension but it has gained more prominence as the growth in urban communities places more pressure on natural resources.  When you sign up for Extension classes, you help us to continue the tradition, and provide another 100 years of sustainability education.

The Cooperative Extension System was established by the Smith-Lever Act of 1914, and allows us all to benefit from the research and education of each state’s land-grant universities. In Florida, Extension has helped millions by tapping the latest information from the research engines of the University of Florida and Florida A&M University and converting it into practical knowledge we use every day.

Ramona Madhosingh-Hector
Urban Sustainability Agent
UF/IFAS Extension Pinellas County

Phone (727) 582-2656, ramona.m.hector@ufl.edu

Resources:

Pinellas Extension Energy 

FGBC

Sustainable Living at UF

Sustainable Floridians SM