Global Sustainability Scholars announces their 2019 cohort and honorable mentions

February 5, 2019

The Global Sustainability Scholars Program (GSS) is excited to announce the members of the initial cohort of undergraduate students. The program was open for sophomore (second-year) students from all over the United States that are interested in a variety of disciplines related to sustainability.

This prestigious, three-year summer experiential learning opportunity fosters professional development within a new generation of scientists who represent the diversity of today's society.  The program is focused on transdisciplinary sustainability science and innovation.

This inaugural cohort will focus on urban sustainability at the intersection of food, energy and water needs, and will travel during the summer to Seattle, Washington; Bristol, United Kingdom; and, Berlin, Germany, among other locations. Scholars will work with five of the fifteen Belmont funded Sustainable Urbanisation Global Initiative projects.  Furthermore, the paid summer experience will build life-long, international networks of peers for the GSS scholars.

Global Sustainability Scholars received close to 70 applications, and selected seven students. The following outstanding applicants are the members of the 2019 Cohort:

Applicant Name

Institution Name

Field of Study

Kashia Caljesuseso

Fort Lewis College

Environmental Studies

Epongue Ekille

Yale University

Environmental Studies/Policy

Anthony Erebor

University of Michigan

Urban Planning

Mayra Carmen Ona

Florida International University

Environmental Studies/Agricultural

Vanessa Villanueva

University of Hawaii at Manoa

Global Environmental Science

Mya Wells

Howard University

Biology

Alena Zhang

Columbia University in NYC

Double-major in Sustainable Development and Creative Writing


Global Sustainability Scholars would also like to recognize 8 students that all presented exceptionally strong applications, but, due to their student limit, they were unable to accept. Honorable mentions go to the following students:

Lian Huang

University of Hawaii at Manoa

Aiden Kamber

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Marisa I. Matho

The University of San Francisco

Jissell Muir

Florida International University

Marwa Osman

University of Colorado Boulder

Khalil Russell

The College of William and Mary

Greta M. Wilkening

Lawrence University

Melissa Webb

University of California, Berkeley


This program is made possible by National Science Foundation Funding and through close collaboration with Future Earth. Our program is based at the University of Colorado Boulder. This collaboration enables GSS cohorts to work with Future Earth and Belmont Forum Collaborative Research Action (CRA) Project Teams on a common set of core sustainability research challenges. George Mason University has partnered with GSS to support two Mason students that will join the inaugural cohort.

Learn more about Global Sustainability Scholars at their website