The concept of Earth to You has been a idea that I’ve returned to time and time again. I’m thrilled to bring it into fruition. Here is some background on who I am and what this project is all about.
Back in college I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with my life. I knew sustainability, the natural world, and communication were all elements that drew my attention. During that time, I also found myself surrounded by really cool people who were studying different parts of the planet– how plants and insects interact; the intricate songs of birds; how jumping spiders brains work so we could improve computer programming; and plants, and snails! Was that something I was interested in?
I tried field research myself, studying drought’s impacts on Piñon-Juniper woodlands in New Mexico to see potential implications of climate change. While the work got me outside and working with fascinating data sets, presenting the findings and learning from other scientists awoken something for me. Maybe I liked learning from other scientists the most!
Soon I found myself in Central America for a semester where I toured sustainable communities throughout Nicaragua and Costa Rica. From solar women coops; to bird-friendly, shade-grown coffee farms; to organic farm-to-table resorts; these communities showed what’s possible when we live in harmony with the earth. Plus, the people in these communities were happy.
Carrying those experiences with me, I was sure I wanted to do what I could to serve the world through communication and education. Supporting educators in their quest to teach K-12 students and elevating sustainable solutions, our connection to the natural world, and the people studying these has been my jam. Life theme. Or daresay calling?
Supporting K-12 educators
I’ve developed my professional career around the communication and marketing of solutions that will help our society. At the Lab of Ornithology, I wore many hats while working with the education program to get kids across the nation outside doing citizen science. I supported educators nationwide with workshops and webinars, I developed curricula activities, I conducted research on what makes a person identify as a “science person”, and I developed my marketing communication skills to help get the word out about our NGSS curriculum.
Eventually I hopped over to California to join the solar industry to promote renewable energy and experienced what it was like to operate within well-established global marketing team. When I exited the ‘solarcoaster’ I dove back into education.
There’s something rewarding and wonderful about working with educators and knowing that your efforts will positively support the next generation. Plus, I was realizing that education within our country needs more support and so joining a start-up that was creating cutting-edge tools to help K-12 educators develop the next generation of critical thinkers was a pleasure. Without critical thinking or a solid education, how can we expect people to respect science, ask questions, and recognize how incredible (and delicate) this planet truly is?
So that’s my career journey. And the point is, three things, 1) to give you a bit of an idea of what I’m doing in my professional life and 2) to help you now understand why this passion project is so fulfilling to me, and 3) to show how it all ties together.
That brings us to the next section:
Elevating people who bring us closer to Earth
The people who bring us closer to Earth are cool. I could leave it at that, and that would probably be enough to say here, but I will go on.
The people who bring us closer to Earth are cool because they’ve dedicated their time to exploring nature and they have unique perspectives that are often sublime, humbling, and eye-opening! This is probably why, when I find myself next to a scientists or someone who is studying something related to nature and sustainability, I find myself asking a million questions. “I genuinely want to know about the DNA extract from the ground to build understanding of the species that stood here over hundreds of years.” “Yes, what is the number one thing you wish you could tell everyone in the world based on what you know from your research?” “Come again? Spiders travel via our planet’s geomagnetic field?!” That’s just a sampling of conversation snippets.
What do I mean by people who bring us closer to Earth? I mean scientists, naturalists, and anyone who is dedicating a large portion of their time and efforts towards helping humanity better understand our home, this planet. This includes people who study our connection with the natural world and our roots to it as humans.
With this podcast I aim to elevate these voices and perspectives. When it comes to our understanding of Earth’s systems, these people are pushing humanity’s bubble of knowledge. They are making an impact in their communities. They have fresh perspectives on what our fellow earthlings(yes, including plants, animals, and abiotic artifacts) are like and in a way, are helping to define what it means to be human. And, what it means to be a living being and a steward of this planet.
Our connection with Earth
As our society has pummeled through the industrial revolution and leaped into the digital age, our growing detachment to our connection and history with the Earth is concerning. We are still animals. Evolution takes time and we are still very much the same being as humans thousands of years ago and we share similar bodily and psychological needs.
We can develop all the technology we want, but unless we remember where we came from, who we are, and our interdependence with this Earth, we will be blindly marching forward. The Earth’s natural systems are still beyond anything we can recreate, and pushing them to the limit can lead to irreparable damage. The impacts of that, are devastating. So let’s respect and leave in tact as much as we can. Some may argue that it’s too late, but on the other hand, there is so much we can do to make things better. So let’s get to work.
In a time when climate change is one of our greatest, if not THE greatest threat to society as we know it, I’m hoping we can all do our part to get on board with sustainable lifestyles, and through our own actions, can energize and empower others within our communities to do the same. It starts with our selves, and then making impacts in our local communities, by voting, through politics, and through leadership and leading by example.
Doing the right thing
There’s a quote about waking up and deciding each day whether to do something about the issues on this planet or just enjoy the day. I identify with that 100%. I wish I could relax and laze around, but there’s so much work to be done, especially if we are to leave this planet better than we found it for future generations.
What’s the answer to this agonizing dilemma of how to spend our time? I think the answer is to do both. In order to make a difference, to be our best selves, and to act on challenging issues, we need to also enjoy our time and celebrate the elements that bring us joy.
This passion project aims to be a testament to that. Its intent is to bring us back to Earth through fresh understanding and a celebration the natural world.
By strengthening your connection with the natural world, you’ll feel more grounded, humbled, appreciative, and maybe even inspired!
As a listener, you’ll join in to hear fresh perspectives, cool facts about the natural world, and together we will celebrate the incredible nature on this planet and our amazing connection with it. At the same time we will be tuned in to sustainability and how, if at all, we can together make a difference. (Individual and collective action is powerful!)
As a listener, you will will elevate the voices and perspectives of naturalists, scientists, and people who are out standing in the field, on the ground, in places rarely seen by humans, and uncovering new perspectives about the planet. They will be heard! They will bring the Earth to you!
I’m excited to help get the word out. I’m excited to find awesome people to interview and share with you. I’m excited to help spark new awareness and understanding. I’m excited to help people find peace, understanding, and inspiration from this incredible planet. In a world where we are consumed by internet junk, I’m excited to bring something pure, raw, and fresh to the surface. I’m excited to elevate the voice of the planet. I’m excited to help people recognize how incredible this world is. And, I’m excited to help you to discover something new for yourself. Looking forward to having you along for the journey. Let’s do this!
Bringing you closer to Earth, with Earth to You.