Team Rice University (Christine Dobbin | Travis Kwee | Meredith Carle | Amy Roush)

Rice University, Houston, TX


My name is Christine Dobbin and I am a senior at Rice University studying Environmental Health Education. I am from El Paso, Texas and love exploring all landscapes, from scuba diving and kayaking to camping and hiking. These appetites drove me to backpack around Australia for a semester during which I witnessed environmental activism and its intersection with the medical field, lived with Aboriginals and heard their stories, and experienced breathtaking ecosystems. Arriving back in the states, I longed for support in sustainability and found it with a group of beautifully passionate individuals who compose my Project Green Challenge team. Over the last 30 days, I watched the dedication of every one of my team members surpass all of my expectations—a devotion I had almost given up on finding long ago. I am inspired not only by what we were able to accomplish but also by the enthusiasm with which we worked. Project Green Challenge began as a casual and auxiliary project to help me get my environmental fix and is now ending as a much-needed and durable renewal of confidence in the people fighting for justice behind the larger movement, people all across the world, and people right in my backyard.

What five words best describe your PGC experience?

enriching, engaging, enlightening, entertaining, enabling

What was most memorable from your PGC experience?

We all agreed that the most memorable part of this was the formation of our team. Meredith and I were chatting about our ideas for a post-consumer composting project after Environmental Club at the beginning of October. We talked for a while about it and then got side-tracked by plastic-free project ideas. Travis and Amy joined our conversation, Travis, because he had experience working with the Rice administrators on environmental projects and, Amy, because she was interested in learning more about the solutions for environmental problems in our world.
We soon ended up talking about Project Green Challenge after Travis had brought it up to us. It did not take long for us to decide on joining and forming a team.

This was a very exciting time for us all because we discovered other people that were equally enthusiastic about environmental activism as we each were individually.

What have you learned about yourself over the past 30 days?

Over the last 30 days, we have learned that it is possible to have an impact as one person or a small group. However, the caveat was that we had to recognize the need to focus on making a larger impact on fewer topics rather than smaller impacts on more diverse topics. These were important for us to recognize because they are key in making a sustainable and significant impact.