Spring 2016| Posse New York Quarterly

  

Smith STEM Scholar Studies Environmental Health

Smith College STEM Scholar Athena Sofides.

First-year Scholar Athena Sofides is a member of Smith College’s first STEM Posse. Passionate about protecting the health of our environment, she intends to major in environmental science and policy.

“Posse has really encouraged me to go forth and do all of the things I’ve wanted to do,” says Athena.

Athena is a member of Divest Smith College (DSC), an organization dedicated to morally and fiscally responsible treatment of the environment. Over spring break she volunteered with Alternatives for Community and Environment (ACE), an environmental justice organization in Boston.

Athena’s interest in the environment grew from her involvement in PJ's for Patients (PJ4P), an organization she founded in 2013 to provide new pajamas for children and young adults receiving cancer treatments. As Athena became more familiar with the statistics of childhood diseases through PJ4P, she started to think more deeply about the effects of environmental issues on human health.

To deepen her understanding of environmental health, Athena will go abroad this summer with her Grassroots Community Organizing class to study socio-ecological interactions in the biodiverse ecosystems of Costa Rica.

“I’m really excited to meet people there because I’ve heard wonderful things about Costa Rican culture and the respect they have for their environment,” says Athena.

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