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Posted on February 25, 2016

Conference: “Sustainable Communities: The Human Impact” Cal U Women's Studies Social Work Department & The Serene Leadership Institute Poster
9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
March 16, 2016,
Convocation Center, North Wing

Societies thrive when the dignity and rights of all people are respected. That conviction guides a daylong conference, “Sustainable Communities: The Human Impact,” presented March 16 by Cal U’s women’s studies program, Department of Social Work and Serene Leadership Institute.

Participants can view segments from the film series A Path Appears, broadcast last year on PBS television, and hear from speakers including:

  • Dr. Chaone Mallory, who teaches courses in environmental ethics, environmental justice, green political theory and related topics at Villanova University.
  • Ann T. Rosenthal, an artist, activist, educator and writer from Pittsburgh.
  • Dr. John Confer, who teaches in the parks and recreation management program at Cal U.

See the official trailer for A Path Appears.

Conference schedule

  • 9-9:30 a.m. — Registration and continental breakfast.
  • 9:30-10:30 a.m. — Film, A Path Appears, followed by a question-and-answer session.
  • 10:45-11:30 a.m. Dr. John Confer: “Going Green: Environmental Issues, Sustainability and Local Responses in the Mon River Valley.”
  • 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. — Lunch break; additional scenes from A Path Appears will be shown.
  • 12:45-2 p.m. — Dr. Chaone Mallory: “Ecofeminism and Environmental Justice: Theory and Practice,” followed by artist/activist Ann T. Rosenthal: “Art in the Anthropocene” (a popular term for the current geological period in which humans have had a decisive influence on the state of the Earth).
  • 2:15-3:15 p.m. — Activism panel with Mallory, Rosenthal and panelists from the Water We Fighting For organization from Flint, Mich.; followed by breakout discussions led by Cal U student Jaclyn Boehnke and Dr. Beverly Ross, coordinator of Cal U’s online conflict resolution program and director of the Serene Leadership Institute.
  • 3:15-3:30 — Closing remarks

Register for the conference

Conference admission is free, but registration is requested. RSVP via e-mail to

Cost for lunch is $5. Cal U students are admitted free with a valid CalCard.

Four (4) CEUs are available for conference attendees; cost is $15 (free for current Cal U field instructors).

For questions, contact the Department of Social Work at 724-938-5910.

About the sponsors

“Sustainable Communities: The Human Impact” is sponsored by:

  • The 2016 Audrey-Beth Fitch Women’s Studies Conference, an annual presentation by the women’s studies program at Cal U. Housed in the Department of History, Politics and Society, women's studies is an interdisciplinary field that provides a framework for examining women's and men's lives within individual, familial, national and global systems. For details, contact women’s studies director Dr. Marta McClintock-Comeaux at
  • The Department of Social Work and its annual celebration of World Social Work Day. Through its bachelor’s and a master’s degree programs, the Department of Social Work prepares graduates of its BSW and MSW programs for employment in a variety of settings. For more information, contact department chair Dr. Sheri Boyle at
  • The Linda and Harry Serene Leadership Institute, which sponsors a speaker series, scholarships and leadership conferences on campus. To learn more about the Serene Leadership Institute, contact its director, Dr. Beverly Ross, at