Willamette University, Students at the Mill Stream

WU/TIU/TIUA connections lead to new sustainability program

Willamette was one of only five universities nationwide to receive a 2012 exploratory grant from the Henry Luce Foundation's new program, "Luce Initiative on Asian Studies and the Environment." Project leaders from all over campus came together to secure the $50,000 grant, which will be administered by the Centers for Asian Studies and Sustainable Communities in partnership with TIUA and TIU. At the end of the exploratory period, Willamette will be eligible to seek a larger, four-year implementation grant from the Henry Luce Foundation.

"Sustainability and the Pacific Rim" will bring together the Centers for Sustainable Communities and Asian Studies -- and the respective disciplines that are part of the Centers -- to provide students and faculty from across disciplines with opportunities to explore Asian culture and perspectives through the lens of environmental sustainability.

Over the 16-month planning period, Willamette will partner with TIU and TIUA to develop a five-component program that aims to 1) integrate interdisciplinary curriculum modules into select courses in Environmental and Earth Sciences and Asian Studies, 2) expand TIU’s current Japan Studies program to include Willamette science students and environmental science curriculum, 3) introduce a post-session in Japan for student-faculty research teams from Willamette and TIU, 4) grow the Zena Sustainability Institute to provide collaborative learning between TIU, TIUA and Willamette students, and 5) sponsor symposia at Willamette on Asia and the environment.

In addition to providing new learning and enrichment opportunities for faculty and students, this highly collaborative project will further develop Willamette's strengths in Asian studies and sustainability and deepen connections with Asian university partners.

Center for Sustainable Communities

Center for Asian Studies