RCE Youth Coordinators represent the youth within the RCE, and serve as a point of contact for youth seeking to network and engage with cross-RCE initiatives and activities. The Youth Coordinators for RCE North Texas are Brandon Morton and Gary Cocke.
Sustainability Director, University of Texas at Dallas
Gary has led the Office of Sustainability at UT Dallas since 2018 with previous sustainability experience in higher education and municipal government. He is responsible for facilitating the integration of sustainability into academics, student life, operations, and administration and monitoring campus sustainability efforts through the Sustainability Tracking Assessment and Rating System (STARS) Report. Gary teaches a place-based course covers UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and works to align university efforts in support of SDGs. Key affiliations and committees include; North Texas Regional Centre for Expertise, Texas Regional Alliance for Campus Sustainability (TRACS) Communications Chair, Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) UTD Sustainability Committee, Tree Campus USA, Bee Campus USA, and Air North Texas. Gary is the point of contact for all sustainability related inquiries at UTD and is always happy to collaborate with partners working for a sustainable future.
Brandon Morton leads the Office for Sustainability and Programs at Brookhaven College and North Lake College, part of the Dallas County Community College District. He is responsible for guiding both college’s global sustainability goals across academics, operations, outreach, and administration serving more than 25,000 students. Brandon has a B.S. in environmental biology and minor in chemistry from the University of North Texas, is a Fellow of the Global Citizenship Alliance and George Mason University Institute for Humane Studies, and is currently studying science communications in graduate school at Stephen F. Austin State University. Brandon speaks at numerous conferences annually, has published works in the fields of conservation history and sustainability, and has received awards from the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development, GreenSourceDFW, Clinton Global Initiative, Keep America Beautiful, and U.S. Department of Energy. He has served in leadership roles with the Sustainability Management Association, Sierra Club, North Central Texas Council of Governments, Texas Regional Alliance for Campus Sustainability, and City of Denton. He currently serves as the Youth Network Committee Chair for RCE North Texas and Publications Team Leader for RCE Americas Network, serves on the Leaders Alliance and Editorial Board for the National Council for Science and Environment, and is an appointed public official for the City of Farmers Branch.
Programs for youth engagement in North Texas
DAMUN – Established in 2007, the Dallas Area Model United Nations (DAMUN) is an annual conference for high school students from 9th grade to 12th grade providing an immersive academic simulation of the United Nations, including a wide variety of topics and special crisis committees.
YMCA Texas Model United Nations - Established in 2010, the YMCA Texas Model United Nations is a youth development program in which student from 6th grade to 12th grade simulate member states of the United Nations to solve pressing global problems. The annual 3-day conference is organized and by students.
GEMUN – Established in 1990, the Global Elementary Model United Nations (GEMUN) is an annual 2-day event for students from Kindergarten to 8th grade where students role-play working toward world cooperation in the assemblies of the United Nations. The program is open to elementary schools and middle schools all over Texas and has been held at Dallas College Brookhaven Campus for the last 15 years. For more information on how to get involved or sign up your students from grade 2 thru 8, please contact Marti Cockrell email@example.com.
Dallas College (DC), formerly known as the Dallas County Community College District (DCCCD), believes that global awareness is vital for success and marketability of today’s students. Dallas College is working to become an environmental and social responsibility leader in our community advocating the wise use of natural, financial and human resources though global sustainability education programs, service-learning volunteerism, study abroad, and local international engagement opportunities. During this time of a global pandemic, Dallas College is leading efforts to support online student engagement in activities the promote learning and safety. When our global society returns to normal, Dallas College will continue to offer on campus opportunities for sustainability activities. On campus or online, students participate in student clubs and honor societies that focus on or relate to the 17 SDGs. Some examples include the DC Student STEM League, Dallas Student Street Team, DC Brookhaven Campus Green Team, DC Cedar Valley Campus Green Team, DC Richland Campus Green Team, DC Mountain View Campus Environmental Student Committee, DC North Lake Campus G.R.E.E.N. Club, and the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society. Dallas College is also a partner with the Global Citizenship Alliance, offering student study abroad in Salzburg, Austria where students spend a week in lectures and culture tours to learn about global issues and the 17 SDGs.
RCE Youth Network offers a great variety of online activities and programs to engage students in the Sustainability Global Citizens Community. For information please contact Oriana Silva Mercedes firstname.lastname@example.org
- How to Grow Vegetables and Fruits at Home: Learning Urban Agriculture with educational videos in partnership with Dallas Arboretum & Botanical Gardens.
- The Sustainable Age: Is led by students for students. It is focused on educating and raising awareness of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. This student-led journal provides an environment for students to develop academic research concerning different areas like Social Justice, Human Health and Well-being, Philosophy, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, Climate Action, and Business. Writers can learn introductory level scholarly and peer-reviewed writing methods, supported by an editorial team of volunteer students, faculty, and staff. Every article published in the online journal is related to at least one SDG, is reviewed by at least one person of the editorial review team and includes at least one cited reference using MLA format. Currently, the journal is published by Dallas College and will soon be available to the public at www.TheSustainableAge.com. If you would like to submit an article to the journal, please contact the chair of the editorial team Ms. Oriana Silva email@example.com.
- Volunteer Activities at Dallas College and Dallas Arboretum & Botanical Gardens: as a member of the RCE NTX Youth network, you can participate in learning projects, like gardening and composting, to improve your eco-skills and keep your environment healthy.