Our 2021-22 student interns, arranged by the branch of sustainability their team will be focusing on at Virginia Tech:
Energy Team (Lead)
My name is Lila, and I am a junior in aerospace engineering, with minors in green engineering and mathematics. I am so excited to work with other students who are passionate about sustainability and to help the Virginia Tech community lower its carbon footprint. I hope to eventually work on sustainability within the aerospace industry, specifically with either airplanes or wind turbines. Outside of class, I am involved with Be the Match, the Environmental Student Coalition, VT Equine Volunteering, ΑΦΩ, AIAA, SWASE, Outdoor Club, and swim club. I spend as much time as I can outside, and I love to hike and paint in my free time!
Energy Team (Communications Representative)
Hi! My name is Charlotte Mombaur and I am currently majoring in Smart and Sustainable Cities as well as pursuing a minor in environmental planning and policy. I will be graduating in spring 2023! I am originally from Germany but have grown up in Virginia; my interest in renewable energy and sustainability stems from my travels to a variety of cities in Europe. I am always searching for ways to get involved on campus especially in clubs or activities that incorporate sustainability or conservation efforts. Outside of school and working I like to spend my time outdoors doing everything from hiking, biking, running or just enjoying the sunshine with a good book! My future plans include getting to see the world while discovering ways to decrease our carbon footprint and transform our future cities to be greener.
Hey I'm Tyler Misencik! I'm a Junior majoring in Civil and Environmental Engineering and minoring in Green Engineering. I have strong passions for sustainable transportation infrastructure and urban land use because of the incredible potential they have to improve our everyday lives. This summer I interned for the Washington Area Metro Transit Authority, and I'm also involved with the Sustainable Land Development Club at Virginia Tech. Through this internship I hope to improve the safety and quality of bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure around campus.
Hi I’m Cameron Hadley and I’m majoring in Environmental Policy & Planning with a double major in Economics. I’m a sophomore from Chantilly, Virginia and plan on graduating in 2024. I am passionate about sustainability and environmental protection, especially as they relate to the development of urban areas. In the future, I hope to pursue a career in environmental policy. In my free time, I enjoy reading, spending time outdoors, and watching tv. I look forward to learning from everyone as we work together to make Virginia Tech a more sustainable place!
Hello everyone my name is Matthew Duff, and I am majoring in Biological Systems Engineering while interning as part of the Office of Sustainability's Energy Team. I’m planning to graduate in 2022, and I'm hoping to work in bioprocessing of renewable materials like bioplastics or bioethanol. I believe that sustainability will quickly become an even more pivotal issue in the coming years, and I'm eager to research and design new ways to keep our planet healthy!
Waste Team (Lead)
Hi! My name is Madison Norman and I am a sophomore from Ashburn, Virginia majoring in Environmental Conservation and Society in the Class of 2024. As soon as I arrived on campus I joined the Environmental Coalition as I am passionate about promoting environmental awareness and changing the unsustainable everyday habits that have been integrated into our society. One of the reasons I am in college is to learn about what I would like to do in the future, but as long as I’m working to protect the environment then I am in the right profession. In my free time I enjoy painting, cooking, gardening, going on walks, and spending as much time outside as possible. I cannot wait to get involved and make a positive difference on campus and in the community!
Waste Team (Communications Representative)
Hello everyone! My name is Sapna Seth and I am a Junior studying Marketing with a double minor in Psychology and Pathways to Sustainability. My dream is to use my knowledge in marketing either for advocacy work with an environmental nonprofit, or to market for environmentally sustainable products so they can gain traction in the marketplace. My goal is to teach the public about environmental issues and encourage everyone to adopt more environmentally sustainable practices. One issue I am extremely passionate about is ending factory farming, which is an environmental issue that led me to become vegetarian. Aside from helping the environment, some of my interests include singing and playing volleyball. I am proud to be a part of a university that cares about its impact on our planet and I am excited to be a part of the initiative that will bring Virginia Tech to an even more environmentally friendly future!
Hi! My name is Lauren Maunder, and I’m a junior majoring in National Security and Foreign Affairs (NSFA) and Russian, with a minor in Pathways to Sustainability. I’m interested in the intersection of the environment and human society, as well as the ways that sustainability can be implemented, both in our government and in global institutions. After I graduate in the spring of 2023, I hope to go to law school and study environmental law. In my free time, I love reading, hiking around Blacksburg, embroidering, and spending time with friends. I’m so excited to be a part of the Waste Team this year!
Hey! My name is Alyssa and I’m a Biochemistry major. I'm a rising senior that will be graduating a year early. My interests in sustainability stem from seeing the environmental crisis unfold both in the United States and Bolivia; household sustainability just isn't affordable for most families and I want to change that. Following graduation, I want to combine my formal biochemistry education and my passion for making sustainability accessible by working to develop affordable forms of waste management for the average family. In my free time, I love to spend my time gardening, thrifting, and cooking! I'm also involved in Latin Link and Out in STEM here at Virginia Tech. I’m really excited to be a part of the Waste team and all that we'll accomplish!
Water Team (Lead)
Hello everyone! My name is Maura Harbaugh and I am a sophomore studying Civil and Environmental Engineering with a minor in Green Engineering. I am thrilled to be a part of the water team and make a difference on our campus and beyond. I grew up with a love for the natural world as well as an appreciation for all of the various ecosystems it contains. More recently, I developed a passion for clean water, environmental protection services, and sustainability. For this reason I have focused a lot of my energy on finding a path that fulfills what I believe is my true purpose in life. Ideally, I would love to get a job doing something with wetland restoration and protection. In my free time, you may find me kayaking, hiking, watching youtube, or playing with my kitten Mushu (like the character from Mulan...did I mention I am a huge Disney fanatic)! I am so excited to meet new people, travel to new places, and make a difference.
Water Team (Communications Representative)
Howdy! My name is Rebekah Phomsopha and I am majoring in Environmental Policy and Planning and a minor in Ecological Cities, graduating in Spring 2022. I am a huge dog person and have a dog, Loki, at home. My life is very food-centered and I am always thinking about what to cook and eat next with my best friend Hanna. I have 3 siblings, hence my tendency to be people-oriented. The future is sustainable and I believe to achieve that we must gather the community and work together. I am excited to be on the water team and contribute back to the Virginia Tech community!
Hey everyone! My name is Natalie Romero and I’m a junior from Washington, DC. I’m majoring in Civil and Environmental Engineering with a minor in Green Engineering. I am incredibly excited to be interning for VT’s Office of Sustainability this year with such a talented and dedicated group. My hope is to promote greener lifestyles on campus—especially when it comes to how we are using and protecting our water systems. As I dive deeper into my studies, it has become increasingly apparent to me that serious changes must occur in both our day-to-day habits and large-scale operations in order to protect and maintain clean water for ourselves and our future.
Hi everyone! My name is Abby Stevens, and I’m a Sophomore majoring in Environmental Science with a minor in Green Engineering. I plan to graduate Spring of 2024. I first became interested in sustainability because of my AP Environmental Science class in high school. After learning more and making changes to my lifestyle, I fell in love with sustainability and the health of our planet. I hope to work in the fields of water conservation or sustainable agriculture. In my free time, I love playing guitar, hiking, baking, and learning sign language! I can’t wait to work with my team to help our community be more sustainable! Go Hokies :)
Food Team (Lead)
Hi! My name is Katie Smith and I am a sophomore studying Environmental Policy and Planning with plans to graduate in spring of 2024. I developed a passion for the environment growing up visiting the beautiful beaches in my home state of New Jersey and seeing the impact climate change had on the fragile ecosystems there. In my free time, I love hiking, reading, listening to music, or drinking a cup of coffee. I’m excited to work to make a difference to decrease food waste, increase the availability of more sustainable food options, and continue to educate members of the Virginia Tech community about the impact that food can have on the planet.
Food Team (Communications Representative)
Hey guys! My name is Trish Grace. I am a junior majoring in Geography and Smart and Sustainable Cities. I am interested in using the relationship between people and location to build more productive and responsive cities. After graduation, I am interested in joining the Peace Corps and then creating and enhancing sustainable communities by using green infrastructure. I'm really excited to work with everyone this year and help make campus more sustainable!
Hello! My name is George Turner and I am from Norfolk, Virginia. I am an Applied Economic Management major with a concentration in Environmental Economics. I am also minoring in Sustainable Cities. I plan to graduate in the Fall of 2022. I started gaining a passion for sustainability in high school joining recycling and garden clubs in which I helped my school build our first chicken coop, fruit tree espalier garden, and pond. During my college education my passion for sustainability has deepened and my viewpoint for what sustainability means to me has broadened. As I am going into my third year in The Environmental Coalition At Virginia Tech club I am thankful for all of the people I have been able to meet that share my same passion. As part of the Food Team, I hope to broaden the dining hall options for students while also focusing on where and how us Hokies source our food!
Hi! My name is Kloe Rife, and I am from Haysi, Virginia. I am an Environmental Resources Management major and Forestry minor, and I plan to graduate in spring of 2023. I work at DX in Dietrick Hall as a Student Assistant Manager, and I am so excited to be a part of the food team! I have had a passion for sustainability since being an active member of my high school’s FFA chapter, and I came to Virginia Tech to further pursue my passion. Being a part of the food team and working in dining, I want to work toward making our dining facilities waste free and sustainable for the future of our students. I am looking forward to meeting people and making positive changes happen on campus this academic year!
Hello! My name is Susan Sale. I'm honored to be serving Virginia Tech this year by working with the rest of the food team to make our existence here in Blacksburg more sustainable. I'm hopeful that knowledge from my major, Industrial Design, will help with the systems thinking and design aspects of our projects this year, and I hope that the knowledge I gain from being an Office of Sustainability Intern will stick with me and make me a better designer going forward. I value our mission here because of the work I’ve done back home, in Newport News, Virginia, with several local organizations and initiatives dedicated to combating hunger and poverty. I’ve learned that access to nutrition and stewardship of our food resources are critical areas and areas I’m thinking about going into in the future. I’m planning to graduate Spring 2024, but while I’m here at VT, I’m having fun making new friends, being in GIVE club and Students for Sustainable Practice, and playing tennis and disc golf. And attempting to grow lettuce in my dorm room.