Andrea Braswell, ’14, has always had a passion for stewardship and a desire to make a difference. After reading Rachel Carson’s seminal work Silent Spring, watching movies like Erin Brockovich, and learning about other pressing issues such as energy conservation, it became apparent to Andrea that environmental degradation was a huge problem. More important, she wanted to be a part of the solution.
Andrea found the perfect way to do so by majoring in environmental sustainability.
“I realized that the environmental sustainability major clearly aligned with my interest, but the major is also very interdisciplinary,” said Andrea. “I was able to take a variety of electives that complimented my core classes.”
And she deepened her learning through her involvement on campus, particularly as treasurer and president of Meredith’s student-led environmental awareness organization, Angels for the Environment, also known as A4E.
As a leader in A4E, Andrea guided a number of initiatives. She worked with campus facilities to conduct a campus-wide trash audit, planning the event and participating in the audit, as well as analyzing the data and reporting improvements in campus recycling efforts.
Other initiatives led by Andrea included “Earth Day Beneath the Stars,” an event that encouraged students to appreciate our planet, and an annual plant sale that was the organization’s most significant fundraiser. She also directed A4E’s volunteer efforts at Meredith’s community garden and Raleigh City Farm.
As a rising freshman, Andrea participated in Meredith’s Summer Symposium for Multicultural students, where she later served as a counselor and student coordinator.
“This program helped me to develop a greater sense of awareness and appreciation for diversity and my own personal uniqueness,’ said Andrea.
Andrea’s drive to make the most of her experience was supported by Meredith faculty and staff. She worked in the Office of Student Leadership and Service as a student assistant, where she honed valuable skills such as database and project management. Academic Advising and Career Planning staff helped her create a four-year plan to give her efforts intentionality. And her faculty adviser helped her select the courses that would best feed her interests as well as challenged her to take courses outside of her comfort zone (several of which turned out to be her favorites).
With a passion for sustainability, social justice, and making a difference, Andrea is now making an impact and contributing to her community through education.
“Because of the preparation I received at Meredith, I have the confidence and determination to have a rewarding career, and make valuable contributions to society.”
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