Faculty of the Virginia Tech MNR program at a retreat in 2014

Faculty in Retreat

How often does CLiGS gather graduate faculty from Virginia, Wisoconsin, Tennessee, Pennnsylvania, and Missouri in one room to share teaching techniques and discuss how best to serve its growing online student body?  The answer is: never. This Fall was the very first time.

Though the Master of Natural Resources (MNR) degree program has existed since 1994, the intervening two decades have seen remarkable progress and changes. This culminated in 2014 with an entirely online option for the degree, a new tuition model that treats students the same regardless of their place of residency, and record high course enrollments. (more…)

Katie Man

From Outdoor Enthusiast to EPA Business Analyst

For as long as she can remember, Katie Man has been fond of the outdoors. In fact, relishing the spare time she gets, if she isn’t in the kitchen baking, you can most likely find her hiking, camping, or running.

“As a child I was fascinated with bugs and dinosaurs and liked to spend hours outside,” Katie remarks. Her father was a nuclear physicist and her mother was involved with the Arlington Outdoor Education Association, which played a major role in fostering this interest. “One of my sisters ended up studying plant systematics, so it must have been something about the way we were raised!” (more…)

Confucian temple ceiling

Architects Explore Sustainable Housing Development in China

This year the Center for Leadership in Global Sustainability (CLiGS) continued to build upon its experience in China, expanding the reach of its China-related programs, by developing and leading a study tour for the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the U.S.’s leading professional association for architects. The group of 19 professional architects, all members of AIA’s Housing Knowledge Community and representing a wide range of both private architecture practices and academic institutions, traveled to China’s Yunnan Province in May, (more…)


The Art of Yes: Improvisation for Sustainability Leaders

Each of us needs to cross boundaries of all kinds and connect in meaningful ways with others. That common need is the basis for the approach to leadership communication that I bring to the Executive Master in Natural Resources (XMNR) program at Virginia Tech’s Center for Leadership in Global Sustainability (CLiGS) in Arlington, Virginia. (more…)


Teaching Leadership for Sustainability in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Sustainability professionals must be fearless.  They regularly target the most difficult challenges known to humanity, problems of such consequence that the solutions will determine the quality of our future. Consider the Chesapeake Bay Watershed (CBW). (more…)

Arlington County Community Energy Plan Cover

Climate, Energy, and Cities: Learning By Doing

Cities are the solution to climate change. Cities can influence building and transportation systems, the two largest sources of global greenhouse gas emissions, with tools like land-use zoning, transportation infrastructure, and building codes. Cities are motivated to play a leading role in addressing climate change because they want to attract residents, businesses, taxes, and prestige, and can do so by developing thriving and secure, sustainable places to live and work.  Moreover, city governance tends to be pragmatic and effective. (more…)