Upcoming Events

Below, in the calendar you can find events across Illinois that you and your student group may be interested in. Below the calendar, you will find descriptions of ISEC sponsored events.

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Past Events

Good Food Festival & Conference

Location: UIC Forum (725 W Roosevelt Rd. MC 126 Chicago‚ IL 60608)
Date: March 13-15

The Good Food Financing & Innovation Conference helps to address one of the biggest challenges facing the Good Food Movement: helping food and farm businesses scale up to meet burgeoning demand. Whole Foods Market co-CEO Walter Robb leads an all star opening symposium with Howard Tullman of 1871, Kendall Musk of Kitchen Community, and Erika Allen of Growing Power. The 2014 Conference, sponsored by Crain’s Chicago Business, is shaping up to be bigger and better than ever!

2014 Lobby Day

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. 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 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!

Latinos, Environmental Justice & Climate Change

Location: Great Cities Institute (412 South Peoria Street, Suite 400, CUPPA Hall, Chicago)
Date: March 7th, 2014

Description: This panel on environmental justice will be sponsored by the National Resource Defense Council. Featured speakers will include Manuel Pastor, Professor, University of Southern California; Rachel Morello-Frosch, Professor, University of California, Berkeley; Adrianna Quintero, Founder and Director, NRDC Latino Advocacy Program; Rafael Hurtado Jr., Community Organizer, LVEJO. The event will be moderated by Teresa Córdova, Director, UIC Great Cities Institute.

11th Annual Central Illinois Composting Symposium

Location: Lincoln Land Community College’s Green Center, 5250 Shepherd Road, Springfield, IL

Date: Feb. 19th, 2014

Description: Lincoln Land Community College’s Green Center is hosting the 11th Annual Central Illinois Composting Symposium Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Trutter Center on the Springfield campus. Registrations are being accepted now. The theme for this year’s symposium is “What’s the Dirt on Composting?” The symposium is a forum for sharing composting information; stimulating the composting market; and bringing composters, educators, and businesses together so that everyone can benefit from learning about this excellent organic soil amendment and materials management method. Participants learn about composting organic materials and resources to help them be a successful composter. Jen Walling of the Illinois Environmental Council will provide the keynote presentation and discuss what is happening with compost in Illinois in terms of policy and practice, and where compost is headed. A Build Your Own Bin (BYOB) workshop is being offered for participants to learn more about vermicomposting and to construct their own vermicomposting bin for use at home, work, or school. Symposium presenters include educators and experts from USDA Natural Resources Conservation Services, Better Earth, Illinois Recycling Association, Illinois Stewardship Alliance and Southern Illinois University.

Chicago Volunteer Expo

Location: Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum (2430 N Cannon Drive Chicago IL 60614)

Date: Feb. 16th, 2014

Description: There are so many ways to give back to your community in 2014. Find the one that’s right for you at the Chicago Volunteer Expo! Visit over 50 nonprofit organizations from all over the city to learn how you can lend a hand. Whether your passion is the environment, the arts, or social justice, there’s a volunteer opportunity waiting for you.

A Conversation About Conservation in DuPage

Location: Good Samaritan Hospital (3815 Highland Avenue, Downers Grove, Illinois 60515)

Date: February 11th, 2014

Description: 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. Hosted by the Illinois Environmental Council. 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

Location: St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church 8235 S. South Shore Drive, Chicago

Date: Jan. 19th, 2014

Description: 2,000+ people will gather to celebrate Dr. King’s legacy and to carry on his work of organizing for justice. Part of the 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. 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:

ISEC Fall Conference 2013

Location: Respiratory Health Association (1440 W. Washington St) in Chicago

Date: November 16th, 2013

Description: The conference will feature speakers from the NRDC and Southeast Environmental Task Force covering the petroleum coke piles on Chicago’s southeast side, an information session on effectively lobbying legislators, and a “state of the state” update.

Nuclear Conference at University of Chicago

Location: Univeristy of Chicago

Date: December 1-2, 2013

Description: NEIS, Beyond Nuclear and Friends of the Earth invite you to a 2-day Conference at Univ. of Chicago
A Mountain of Waste 70 Years High: Ending the Nuclear Age. Student/low-income/senior rates available
contact, (773)342-7650

Bill McKibben/ 350.0rg’s Do the Math Tour

Date: November 28, 2013

Location: Athenaeum Theater
2936 North Southport Avenue
6 PM Doors open, event starts at 7 PM

ISEC Inaugural Meeting (2012)

Date: November 10, 2012

Location: Respiratory Health Association Office in Chicago

Description: This inaugural event will feature networking opportunities with students and sustainability professionals, presentations by professionals from the NRDC, Environment Illinois, and the Environmental Law and Policy Center.  There will be interactive break-out sessions to help you develop, manage, and expand your environmental advocacy efforts. Free lunch! Socializing hour after to keep the conversation going in a less formal setting.

Great Lakes Bioneers Conference

Date: November 2-4, 2012

Location: University of Illinois in Chicago

Description: ISEC will be tabling with the Illinois Environmental Council at the Great Lakes Bioneers Conference

ISEC Fall Conference 2011

Description: The Annual ISEC Fall Conference provided students from across the state with the opportunity to learn essential leadership skills, participate in student-led workshops, and connect with fellow students from across the state.  The conference featured a leadership and organizer training on Saturday in partnership with the IRON Student Network.  Sunday featured a shorter program with 3 student-led workshops and a guest speaker.  The conference was a great place to meet green minded students and exchange ideas and information for future collaborations.

Springfield Conference 2011

Date: March 30th, 2011

Location: Springfield, IL

Description: The Illinois Student Environmental Coalition once again ventured to Springfield to learn about the legislative process.  We toured the capitol building, watched a session in progress, and met one-on-one with state legislators.  This was a great opportunity to share your voice on the most important environmental issues in our state.

ISEC Fall Conference 2010

Date: November 6th, 2011
Location: 33 E. Congress, Columbia College
Description: Keynote Speaker:  State Senator Heather Steans
Workshops and Presentations included:

  • Green Fees: Steps and Challenges to Implementation
  • Loyola University Bike Club workshop and seminar
  • Seed Bomb workshop led by Columbia College
  • Organizing on Campus: Tools for Making an Impact

Spring Volunteer Day

Date: April 10, 2011

Location: Eden Place Nature Center

Description: A past ISEC event at Eden Place, an oasis of plant and wildlife in Fuller Park, to help plant new seeds and complete grounds work at the urban garden and learning center. Work gloves and gardening supplies were provided (but you could bring your own gloves should you have them).  Made sure to dress for the weather and outdoor work.

Foam Free Day

Date: April 16th, 2011

Location: DePaul University, Elmhurst College, and Northwestern University

Description: A past ISEC event for a statewide event to learn about the health and environmental impacts of Styrofoam, alternatives to Styrofoam, and how we can appeal to officials to take a strong stance against Styrofoam.

Lobby Day 2012

Date: March 29th, 2012

Location: Springfield, IL

Description: Join us for a trip to Springfield where we’ll learn about the legislative process.  We’ll take a tour of the capitol building, watch a session in progress, and meet one-on-one with state legislators.  This is a great opportunity to share your voice on the most important environmental issues in our state.