2014 Lobby Day

Let Springfield know you want your environment protected!

Join ISEC on Thursday, April 3rd for our annual trip to Springfield where we’ll speak with State Legislators about the important environmental issues of the day. We’ll tour the capitol, watch a session in progress, and meet one-on-one with your Representatives and Senators. What better reason is there to take a day away from school than to learn first-hand how environmental laws are made in our state?

This year the Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard (RPS) needs fixing; apex predators, including cougars, grey wolves, and black bears, need to be protected; a ban on toxic coal tar is under discussion; and many other environmental issues are being considered by the people that represent you.

Register for lobby day HERE.

If you’re a student/young professional apply for a scholarship to cover travel and lodging HERE.

Often, we make the largest gains on environmental legislation on lobby day. Your stature as a constituent helps us get co-sponsors, supporters, and forward momentum for the policies that the environmental community support. On lobby day, you will play a crucial role in our efforts to pass meaningful environmental legislation.

You have a choice of coming the night before (April 2nd) for a training and reception with legislators. If you only want to spend one day in Springfield, there will be chartered buses leaving early on Thursday from Oak Park, the south side, and Evanston. Amtrak is also a convenient option. We will send you more information after you register.

If you need any assistance with travel or lodging logistics, we are happy to help. Contact msteffen@ilenviro.org for information about training on the evening of April 2nd, travel, and lodging opportunities. Please feel free to share this 2014 Lobby Day Flyer with anyone you think may be interested in attending!

A Conversation About Conservation in DuPage

Live in or near DuPage County? Come learn how your elected officials plan to protect your environment!

Where? Good Samaritan Hospital (3815 Highland Avenue, Downers Grove, Illinois 60515)

When? February 11th, 2014 from 6:30pm to 8:00pm

Join us for a discussion about environmental policy with DuPage County elected officials from the Downers Grove area from state, county, and municipal government.

The forum will be in the Oak Rooms, which is the cafeteria area. Parking garage D is the best parking location. Attendees can enter the Physician Office Center from the side door and proceed to the cafeteria. View this map of the hospital campus.

Free event – Open to the public: RSVP Here.

Hosted by the Illinois Environmental Council. Event Link: Click here

Co-sponsored by Center for Neighborhood Technology, The Conservation Foundation, Environmental Law and Policy Center, Faith in Place, The Nature Conservancy, Illinois Chapter, River Prairie Group of the Sierra Club, SCARCE

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration and Public Meeting

On Sunday, January 19th 2014 the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration and Public Meeting will bring together 2,000+ people to celebrate Dr. King’s legacy and to carry on his work of organizing for justice. Part of this fight for justice includes addressing that climate change threatens to bring widespread human suffering and the mass extinction of species, yet our planet continues to be abused for corporate profit. The event will be held at St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church (8235 S. South Shore Drive, Chicago).

Music and registration at 2:30 pm. Public meeting starts promptly at 3:00 pm. Sponsored by IIRON and The People’s Lobby. Get more information and register HERE.

Be Heard on Fracking in Illinois!

Before taking a well-deserved break from studying to hopefully enjoy some family time and a good meal, there is one very important matter to consider.  The Illinois Department of Natural Resources published proposed fracking regulations a little over a week ago and five hearings are scheduled for public input. One such hearing is tomorrow (11/26) in Chicago at the University of Illinois at Chicago (726 S. Halsted Street, Student Center East, Room 302) from 6:30 – 8:30pm. If you cannot attend, it is still vitally important that you submit a public comment to IDNR on these rules. The online public comment site provided by IDNR requires citing specific sections of the regulations. For a simpler public comment process, here are action tools that have been put together by several Illinois environmental organizations. Please take the time to make a comment yourself and share with others!

  • Ann Alexander of Natural Resources Defense Council has put together an initial review of the rules in her blog here. This blog details serious concerns and the many ways in which the rules do not meet the intention of the statute.
  • Sierra Club Illinois Chapter has put together an information page and action alert here. They have organized the categories of changes that they’d like to see into: Stronger Protections Against Water Pollution, Closing Loopholes To Ensure All High-Volume Fracking Is Covered, and Stricter Penalties And Disclosure.
  • Environmental Law and Policy Center has put together an important fact sheet on five of the top problems with the rules.  Read more and take action at their site.
  • Faith in Place has also put together an action site for congregations and people of faith.  Click here to view the site and take action.

Fracking Hearing Information
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
6:30pm-8:30pm (Doors open at 5:30pm)
University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC)
726 S. Halsted Street, Student Center East, Room 302
Chicago, IL 60607

Tuesday, December 3, 2013
6:30pm-8:30pm (Doors open at 5:30pm)
Rend Lake College Theater
468 North Ken Gray Parkway
Ina, IL 62846

Thursday, December 5, 2013
6:30pm-8:30pm (Doors open at 5:30pm)
Holiday Inn Effingham, Hotel Ballroom
1301 Avenue of MidAmerica
Effingham, IL 62401

Tuesday, December 17, 2013
6:30pm-8:30pm (Doors open at 5:30pm)
Decatur Civic Center, Auditorium
#1 Gary K. Anderson Plaza
Decatur, IL 62523

Thursday, December 19, 2013
6:00pm-8:00pm (Doors open at 5:00pm)
Southern Illinois University at Carbondale (SIUC)
Student Center, Ballroom B
1255 Lincoln Drive
Carbondale, IL 62901

RSVP TODAY: ISEC Annual Fall Conference on Nov. 16

Join fellow environmentally active students from Illinois at ISEC’s annual fall conference!

The conference will be held on November 16th at the Respiratory Health Association (1440 W Washington Blvd) in Chicago. The event is planned to run from 10am to 4pm.

Learn how to become more effective environmental advocates by experiencing leadership training activities, organizing workshops, and presentations from environmental leaders in Illinois. And if all that isn’t tantalizing enough for you, it is a free event that will include free lunch!

To attend, please register HERE.

Please feel free to contact Matt Steffen at msteffen@ilenviro.org with any questions.

RSVP ISEC & IEC Young Professionals Board Mixer

RSVP TODAY: Illinois Student Environmental Coalition and the Illinois Environmental Council’s Young Professional Board Mixer

Event to be held at Poag Mahone’s (333 S Wells St Chicago, IL) on Wednesday, Oct. 16th at 5:30pm

The event will provide an opportunity for students interested in the environmental sector to meet and network with young leaders who have found careers working for the environment in a relaxed and fun social setting. Anyone is welcome to attend, only 21 & older will be served alcohol. This is a free event with a cash bar, though if you’re feeling generous we will be accepting donations. Light snacks will be provided.

RSVP on or before October 15th to attend.

Please contact Matt Steffen (msteffen@ilenviro.org with any questions or if you would like to sign up for ISEC updates!

Graduating? Check out these Resources

No matter what field of environmental studies your degree is in-fuel & energy, community outreach/education, sustainable agriculture, etc.-one thing is for certain; as you as you finish up your time as a college student and begin making moves towards the professional world you will find yourself swimming in a sea of job interviews (unless you are one of the lucky ones that has a job lined up for them out of college).

Fear not!  Going for an interview might seem a bit scary or overwhelming at first, but your interview skills and confidence will build after each interview you participate in.

Here are a few resources to help you prepare for job interviews:

Common Interview Questions: What the Interviewer Asks the Candidate  & What the Candidate Asks the Interviewer

Job Interview Questions With Answers

Lobby Day 2013 a Success!

Thanks to all the amazing student and community leaders who came out to represent their districts at the Illinois Environmental Council’s Lobby Day 2013, Thursday May 2nd in Springfield.

We travelled the halls of the State’s Capitol Building from 8am until 3:30pm, chasing down our state senator’s and representatives; finding their offices, pulling them out of committee meetings, and even talking while walking with them to meetings.  Students had the first-hand chance to witness the way environmental laws are made and to influence them in order to protect the environment in Illinois.

Students also got the chance to network with other environmental professionals from groups such as Respiratory Health Association, Usagain, Center for Neighborhood Technology, Faith in Place, Sierra Club Illinois, Environmental Law and Policy Center and more.

Overall an exciting and successful lobby day!

Students (on right) from Students for a Sustainable Future represented Joliet Junior College at Environmental Lobby Day in Springfield May 2nd. They spent the day speaking to their state senators and representatives and lobbying for environmental bills. Thanks for coming out and fighting for the environment in Illinois!


Heartland Coalfield Alliance Retreat

Register today to join the Heartland Coalfield Alliance from May 17 to May 19 at Camp Ondessonk in the beautiful Shawnee Hills (see map).

We’ll focus on building the skills, networks and campaigns we need to ensure that the true costs of coal are borne by the industry as we work to create a just and sustainable energy future in America’s Heartland. There will be three different tracks (general, organizing and technical), offering something for all, no matter what your level of knowledge or expertise.

HCA Retreat Flier

Registration For Lobby Day Closes This Week

Registration ends at 5pm this Friday (4/26).

Students-don’t miss out on your chance to learn how to change environmental policies in Illinois.  Join ISEC for Lobby Day on Thursday May 2nd. We have a limited amount of scholarships available to reimburse students for train travel to Springfield BUT YOU MUST SIGN UP BEFORE 5PM FRIDAY.

Register individually here:

Students, in order to be reimbursed for travel expenses please fill out this form:
Expense Reimbursement Form

Tour the capitol, watch a session in progress, and meet one-on-one with your Representatives and Senators.
Utilize your
power to put pressure on our senators and representatives to do the right thing.
Strengthen your speaking skills with those in leadership positions and network with other environmentally active students as well as professionals from the field.

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