How does a young woman who grew up in Holland Landing near Newmarket, Ontario, begin working on sustainability in an Orillia organization?
Ask Jessica Kearney. She did it.
Jessica, a 27 year-old graduate of Lakehead University in Orillia, was recently hired as a co-op student intern by Sustainable Orillia through an ECO Canada program. ECO Canada is an organization which builds the Canadian environmental workforce – across all industries – and supports individuals who are seeking environmental careers. Jessica’s 4-month position with Sustainable Orillia is made possible by Eco Canada’s Student Work-Placement Program.
A self-described avid hiker who spends all her free time outside and on the water, Jessica is also a consummate learner, teacher and advocate by nature. Currently, she is a graduate student in Social Justice and Community Engagement at Wilfred Laurier University.
“I believe in the power of education and local advocacy to make powerful and lasting impact to address large social issues”, says Jessica. “When communities are able to create a culture of care with structures in place, I believe we are able to ensure that all members of the community are taken care of. I want to work for local organizations to create community, which in turn creates lasting change.”
Jessica’s employment with Sustainable Orillia will include work on the organization’s new Electric Vehicle Information Portal (EVIP) project – soon to be featured on this website as a means of providing the public with information on electric vehicles (EVs) and Canada’s transition away from internal combustion engines (ICE) vehicles. The portal will also present the social value benefits of purchasing an electric vehicle and provide basic information on the purchase of an EV or a Plug-in-Hybrid Vehicle (PHEV), offering comparative costs and benefits, including charging considerations and options.
A position in Sustainable Orillia is a perfect fit for this emerging leader in environmental protection. Sustainable Orillia engages local residents in actions that will protect the planet for generations to come, and Jessica is up to that challenge!