2008 Ambassadors

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On April 29, 2008, SIUC Student Development hosted the 2008 SIUC Environmental Ambassador Awards ceremony in the Vermillion Room at the SIUC Student Center. Dr. Larry Dietz, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Paul Restivo, Director of the Center for Environmental Health & Safety presented the awards to sixteen students who performed a tremendous amount of volunteer service for positive environmental projects during the 2007-2008 academic year. Including the 2008 award winners, there have been a total of seventy eight Environmental Ambassador Awards presented since the program began during the 2001-2002 academic year. 

Mythili Rundblad, Student Development Coordinator and manager of the Saluki Volunteer Corps served as Emcee of the event. In welcoming the attendees, Ms. Rundblad stated: “Thank you to the students who are our Environmental Ambassadors. They are generous in volunteering their time and skills to help community organizations and worthy causes. These students believe that taking care of the environment is all of our responsibility. They raise awareness on our campus and community and motivate others to positive service. The Environmental Ambassadors are good examples of citizen-scholars and we are proud of their efforts.”

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Mythili Rundblad of SIUC Student Development addresses the gathering.

Paul Restivo provided a brief overview the Environmental Ambassador program. Mr. Restivo stated that, “the students gathered here today to receive 2008 Honorary Environmental Ambassador awards represent, in my opinion, some of the best student leaders at SIUC. You have proven you are all citizen-leaders by your tremendous level of volunteer service and you really have made a difference in our region! When one takes a step back and considers all the worthy positive environmental projects that you have worked on, it is simply amazing. Your volunteer service is recognized and greatly appreciated!”

Awards Ceremony

Paul Restivo, Director of the SIUC Center for Environmental Health & Safety

Ms. Rundblad also welcomed community partners who were in attendance to honor the award winners, including Hugh Muldoon from the Interfaith Center; Valerie Rasp of Keep Carbondale Beautiful and Jennifer Sublett from the Shawnee National Forest. Each of these community partners thanked the students for their volunteer service and expressed how important the student-volunteerism has been for their organizations.

Vice Chancellor Dietz thanked the student Environmental Ambassadors for their service to the community. Dr. Dietz commented that: “It was my pleasure to address the Environmental Ambassadors and to present awards to several of the members. The work that these students do to advance sustainability and environmentally friendly practices is important to the planet but also sets an example for those within the campus community. Their work is also noticed by many others who observe them and enhances the image of the entire University. For all you do, we thank you.”

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Mr. Restivo & Dr. Dietz then presented the Environmental ambassador awards. Meet the 2008 SIUC Environmental Ambassadors:


Joe Batir

Joe Batir

Joe a junior studing Geology from Channahon, Illinois. (currently studying abroad at Curtin University of Technology, Perth Australia)



Steve McInnes

Steve McInnes

Steve is a junior studying Recreation from Christopher, Illinois.



Krishna Balasubramanian

Krishna Balasubramanian

Krishna is a Higher Education gradate student from Carbondale, Illinois.



Jason Moore

Jason a senior studying Administration of Justice from Streator, Illinois.



Jason Carey

Jason Carey

Jason is a senior studying Recreation from Naperville, Illinois.



James Muhlhausen

James Muhlhausen

James is a senior studing Forestry from Palatine, Illinois.



Karen Clauson

Karen Clauson

Karen is a Geography graduate student from Orland Park, Illinois.



Leah Otten

Leah Otten

Leah is a senior studying Dental Hygiene from Frankfort, Illinois.



Aspen D'Costa

Aspen is a Manufacturing Systems graduate student from Mumbai, India.



Megan Pulliam

Megan Pulliam

Megan is a senior studing Spanish and Pre-Medicine from Chatham, Illinois.



John Dyer

John Dyer

John is a sophomore studying Geography & Environmental Resources from Edwardsville, Illinois.



Katie Thomas

Katie Thomas

Katie is a junior studying Political Science from Fort Collins, Colorado.



Anita Eckhardt

Anita Eckhardt

Anita is an Environmental Resources & Policy graduate student from Decatur, Illinois.



Kristen Thorpe

Kristen Thorpe

Kristen is a junior studying Linguistics from Glenarm, Illinois.



Sarah Jones

Sarah Jones

Sarah is a junior studying Music Business from Centralia, Illinois.



Christopher Klarer

Christopher is a senior studying Art, from Makanda, Illinois.



The new SIUC Environmental Ambassadors and others pose for a group photograph:

Group photo Group photo


Additional photos of the event:

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