Climate March inspires and empowers McDaniel students

McDaniel students at the Peoples Climate March in April 2017
June 26, 2017

On April 27, an unseasonably hot day that seemed ironically appropriate, more than 35 McDaniel students joined the thousands of marchers from all over the world gathered in the nation’s capital for the People’s Climate March.

“It's not just about the stereotypical tree-hugging hippies trying to save the Earth — it's about like-minded people coming together to make an impact,” says Sabrina Biel ’18, an Environmental Studies major from Chesapeake Beach, Md., who joined the McDaniel contingent organized by the College’s Green Life club and Environmental Studies professors Jason Scullion and Mona Becker.

The students, with a diversity of majors ranging from Psychology to Political Science, boarded the bus bound for D.C. in the early morning hours because they share an interest in addressing the threats caused by climate change, and they wanted to express their opinions to their elected representatives.

“I wanted to make history, be a part of history,” says Biel. “I want to be a part of the impact for my future children and grandchildren, and for the sake of everyone else.”

For Ana Salas ‘18, a Cinema major from Orlando, Fla., marching was a way of showing everyone that people can make an impact.

 “I think often times people are discouraged from taking action, such as recycling for example, because they think ‘one bottle won't make a difference,’” says Salas. “With an event like this one, we put things into perspective and we help people realize how big the movement is.

“The atmosphere at the march was very empowering. Walking through crowds of people who are just as passionate about the environment as I am made me feel like we can bring about change if we all stand together.”

Overall, Scullion says he believes it’s valuable for college students to participate in democratic processes like the People’s Climate March. He was also happy to see so many people at the march, adding, “It’s our responsibility. If we don’t address climate change, the future will be difficult. Together, we can meet this challenge.”