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Roots and Shoots

What is Roots and Shoots?

Roots and Shoots is a program of the Jane Goodall Institute that has for the last 20 years engaged the youth of this world to foster respect and compassion for all living things, both locally and internationally.  Roots and Shoots provides a framework for individuals around the world to organize and effectively implement meaningful projects that promote care and concern for animals, people, and the planet.

Our Mission and History:

To educate, motivate, and empower JMU students to affect positive change for humans and the natural environment.

We formed a JMU Roots and Shoots chapter because we wanted to give JMU students a voice in local and international environmental issues.  After taking the course, Primate Conservation Biology, each of us realized that students can play a key role in changing how humans perceive and interact with their environment. 

In May 2010, we visited Duke University to attend a Primate Conservation Working Group, hosted by the Duke Roots and Shoots chapter.  The objective of this conference was to develop ways for students to get more involved in issues related to primate conservation.  After meeting with Duke students and faculty and scientists from the Duke Lemur Center and North Carolina Zoo, we were excited to form our own JMU chapter.

In October 2010, two of us - Kaeley Pryor (Anthropology) and Justin White (Geographic Science) - traveled to Danbury, CT to attend the first annual North American Roots and Shoots Training Summit.  After attending workshops and meeting directly with Dr. Goodall, we were excited to take our new ideas to JMU.  Back on campus, we met with the other founding members of JMU Roots and Shoots, Marin Barden (Biology) and Lauren Sclater (Communication Studies), and together designed and planned our model for an effective environmentally-concerned organization.  We firmly believe that every individual can and should make a difference and we formed a JMU Roots and Shoots chapter to provide a much- needed platform from which students can be directly involved in changing the world.

Become a JMU Roots and Shoots Member!

Are you interested in joining JMU Roots and Shoots?  If so, email Marin Barden: marinbarden@gmail.com

What JMU Roots and Shoots Members Have Been Up To:

In Summer 2010, Kaeley Pryor studied primate behavior and ecology in Costa Rica

Marin Barden continues to work with Dr. Roshna Wunderlich in the Biology Dept. on primate locomotion and with Dr. Joshua Linder in the Anthropology Dept. on protected areas and human resettlement.

In Summer 2009, Justin White worked as an avian field biologist in Nantahala National Forest in Southeastern U.S.  In Summer 2010, Justin worked as a small mammal biologist in Lake Tahoe, Nevada.

In Spring 2010, Lauren Sclater attended her first conference on the Role of Students in Primate Conservation at Duke University and looks forward to building an effective JMU Roots and Shoots organization.

Internships, Field Schools, Jobs, and Volunteer Opportunities

We are constantly looking out for opportunities for students to get environmentally-based field experience.  Here are a few organizations that offer internships, jobs, and/or volunteer opportunities.  If you know of others, please let us know.  We’re always adding more to the list, so check back often!

Environmentally-related Study Abroad Programs at JMU

JMU offers a number of study abroad and field programs that directly involved environmental issues.  Visit the webpage of the JMU Office of International Programs.

Among these programs, we wish to highlight the program in Cameroon and the program in Madagascar.

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