Global Engagement Seminar students will tackle the future of nature

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Now in its third year, the Global Engagement Seminar for senior undergraduates in all six faculties will focus on the theme “The Future of Nature” this winter term, and will feature acclaimed climate photographer Edward Burtynsky as mentor.

“Every day we’re exposed to the impacts of climate change,” says program director Jasmin Habib, professor of political science. “As students, scholars, policy makers, and practitioners, the impact of the human footprint on the natural environment calls for our urgent attention and action.” 

The course will give students an exceptional opportunity to interact with Burtynsky in his role as the program’s Jarislowsky Fellow. His award winning films and exhibitions, including the most recent Anthropocene, explores the collective impact of our species on the planet.

Burtynsky is regarded as one of the world's most accomplished contemporary photographers. His remarkable photographic depictions of global industrial landscapes are included in the collections of over sixty major museums around the world, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Museum of Modern Art and the Guggenheim Museum in New York, and the Tate Modern in London.

Dirt field of oil derriks

Photo: Edward Burtynsky, Courtesy Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto.

"We are delighted that Ed Burtynsky is the 2020 Jarislowsky Fellow. As a world renowned photographer and filmmaker, his experience combined with the expertise of course instructors Dr. Angela Carter and Dr. Brendon Larson is sure to challenge as well as inspire the students,” adds Habib.

Angela Carter is a professor of political science researching oil and the climate crisis including ‘keep it in the ground’ movements and policy. Brendon Larson is a professor of environmental studies focused on social dimensions of biodiversity conservation.

The Global Engagement program is generously supported by the Jarislowsky Foundation to ensure students from any discipline graduate as adaptable thinkers able to tackle the big challenges of the 21st century. The course will culminate in a public summit in early spring, highlighting the students’ work, and including a keynote address by Burtynsky.

ART 490: The Future of Nature is open to senior undergraduates (3A, 3B, 4A, 4B) from any faculty or affiliated college — they can apply until October 25.

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