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Sustainability in Teaching and Research (STAR) Symposium

STAR Symposium. Sustainability in Teaching and Research. June 2-3, 2023. Included in this banner are the following goals: 1. No Poverty. 2. Zero Hunger. 3. Good health and well-being. 4. Quality Education. 5. Gender Equality. 6. Clean Water and Sanitation. 7. Affordable and Clean Energy. 8. Decent Work and Economic Growth. 9. Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure. 10. Reduced Inequalities. 11. Sustainable Cities and Communities. 12. Responsible Consumption and Production. 13. Climate Action. 14. Life Below Water. 15. Life on Land. 16. Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions. 17. Partnerships for the Goals.

A Symposium on Curricular and Scholarly Innovations based on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Exploring National and International Efforts Toward Equity, Coastal and Climate Futures, Sustainability and Social Justice, and Global Partnership for Sustainable Development.

About the STAR Symposium

The Sustainability in Teaching and Research (STAR) Symposium was hosted at Monmouth University on June 2-3, 2023. The event consisted of a multidisciplinary representation of pedagogical and scholarly work anchored in the U.N. SDGs, primarily those that are geared toward equity (GOALS 1, 5, 8 and 10); environmental and climate action on land and below water (GOALS 6, 7, 13, 14 & 15); sustainability, inclusivity and social justice (GOALS 3, 4, 9, 11 & 16); global partnerships and the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development (GOAL 17); and the alignments with the other SDGs as relevant.

The SDGs also unleashed a collaborative process that involves governments, businesses, civil society and citizens in a collaborative commitment to secure a sustainable future for all nations and peoples. Educational institutions, which serve communities by creating knowledge platforms and action plans for the betterment of society, are at the heart of the success of the SDGs and our common futures. The symposium was geared toward attracting and sharing information on pedagogical and curricular innovations and research projects that incorporate and implement the SDGs.

The STAR Symposium was organized under the joint auspices of the Monmouth University Office of the President, Office of the Provost, Freed Endowed Chair in Social Sciences, School of Education, Institute for Global Understanding, Leon Hess School of Business, Library Services, Department of Political Science and Sociology, Urban Coast Institute, and Wayne D. McMurray School of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Session videos will continue to be added to this page in the coming days. Check back soon for updates.

Agenda & Speakers

CLICK HERE to download a PDF version of the agenda.

Day 1 | Friday, June 2 (In-Person/Hybrid)

Symposium Opening

Morning Discussion Tracks

TRACK A: Educating for Sustainability
  • Moderator: Vecihi Serbay Zambak, School of Education
  • “Incorporating Sustainability into a University Study Abroad,” Jeremy Lackman, Monmouth University
  • “Climate Change, Just Transition and Clean Energy Resources for Sustainable Environment and Livelihood: Case Study Bangladesh,” Khondoker Hossain and Mahbuba Nasreen, Bangladesh University of Professionals (Bangladesh)
TRACK B: Moving Towards Sustainable Environment
  • Moderator: Nguyen Pham, Leon Hess Business School
  • “In Search of Conscious Consumption and Sustainable Consumer Demand: Cultivating Consumer Accountability for Sustainable Consumption and Production Goals,” Claude Taylor, Monmouth University
  • “Mutual Benefits for Offshore Wind Energy in the Mid-Atlantic: Science and Policy Strategies to Mitigate Harm to Marine Species and Maximize Benefits for Renewable Energy,” Riya Ajmera, Monmouth University
TRACK C: Equity, Justice and Sustainable Communities
  • Moderator: Rekha Datta, School of Humanities and Social Sciences
  • “Building a Sustainable Economy and Reducing Income Gaps through Financial Literacy,” Joseph Palazzolo and Carlos A. Navarro, Monmouth University
  • “A Net-Zero Future in the Real Estate Industry,” Gina Shaughnessy, Monmouth University

Webinar: Executive Plenary on Institutional Best Practices on Sustainability

  • Moderator: Tony MacDonald, Director, Monmouth University Urban Coast Institute
  • Dr. Rupa Chanda, Director, Trade, Investment and Innovation Division, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia, and the Pacific (UNESCAP)
  • Dr. Angel Cabrera, President of the Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Dr. Catherine Duckett, Associate Dean, Monmouth University School of Science

Mid-Morning Discussion Tracks

TRACK A: Educating for Sustainability
  • Moderator: Michaeline Skiba, Leon Hess Business School
  • “The White Coat Project: Empowering Students to Make Policy Decisions Toward Health Equity,” Alysson Goodwin, Denise Crowley, Cristianna Cardinale and Francesca Storino, Monmouth University
  • “International Education Committee: Service Learning Opportunities for Faculty Members and Teacher Candidates in School of Education,” Vecihi Zambak, Ai Kamei, Jiwon Kim, Kathryn Lubniewski, Monmouth University
  • “The Societal Impact Agenda for the Smaller Regional Business School: Design and Implementation of the Strategy,” Tjeerd Boonman, Michaeline Skiba, Monmouth University
TRACK B: Moving Towards Sustainable Environment
  • Moderator: Jeffrey Weinstein, Leon Hess Business School
  • “Consumer Health Education Search Patterns and information Sharing with Physicians,” Anait R. Gabrielyan, Mehrdad Roham, Norm Archer, McMaster University (Canada)
  • “Sustainable Development in Louisiana: Interdisciplinary Perspectives,” Brian Bolton, University of Louisiana at Lafayette
  • “Indigenous Land Rights, SDGs, and Climate Change Resiliency,” Ranjan Datta, Mount Royal University (Canada)
TRACK C: Equity, Justice and Sustainable Communities
  • Moderator: Rajnarind Kaur, Leon Hess Business School
  • “The UN Sustainable Development Goals and Global Justice,” Rosemary Barberet, Yousif Almasri, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY
  • “Analyzing ESG in Aluminum Companies,” George A. Mangiero, Arif Qayyum, Charles J. Cante, Iona University
  • “Conceptualizing Age-Friendly Environments: Perspectives of Older non-European Immigrants in Finland (AGE-Immigrant),” Shahnaj Begum, University of Lapland (Finland)

Youth Creative Works on Sustainability

  • Long Branch High School: Mariam Abdelwahed, Christopher Arias Reyes, Kayla Bolden, Jayson Campos, Jonathan Eugenio, Lizeth Eugenio, Maya Grayson, Rayanne Moura-Oliveira, Raphaella Pessoa. Biotechnology High School: Danielle Lee. Calgary High School: Prarthona Datta. Solebury School: Tiyasha Sarkar. SDG#5: Gender Equality – Posters from PS 377/Women and the World: A Comparative Study, Spring 2023, Monmouth University.

Keynote Address

  • Omar Hernandez, Program Manager of the United Nations Academic Impact
  • Facilitators: Dr. Rekha Datta and Lenien Jamir, Senior, Monmouth University

Afternoon Discussion Tracks

TRACK A: Educating for Sustainability
  • Moderator: Michael Chattalas, Leon Hess Business School
  • “Teaching the SDGs: Building a Sustainable Society,” Brian Bolton, University of Louisiana at Lafayette
  • “Interdisciplinary Elementary Teacher Education for Global Sustainability,” Jiwon Kim and Sandra Zak, Monmouth University
TRACK B: Moving Towards Sustainable Environment
  • Moderator: Anna Sadovnikova, Leon Hess Business School
  • “Stripers for the Future: A Research and Education Campaign,” John Tiedemann, Monmouth University
  • “Structural Housing Inequity and Barriers to Home Ownership: A Systematic Review,” Anait R. Gabrielyan and Mehrdad Roham, McMaster University, and Anna Sadovnikova, Monmouth University

Day 2 | Saturday, June 3 (Virtual)

Convener Panel on Sustainability

  • Dr. Nikita Burrows, Assistant Professor, Monmouth University Department of Chemistry and Physics
  • Tony MacDonald, Director, Monmouth University Urban Coast Institute
  • Dr. Anna Sadovnikova, Assistant Professor, Monmouth University Leon Hess School of Business

Morning Discussion Tracks

TRACK A: Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Sustainability Teaching and Research I
  • Moderator: Warren Brown, School of Science
  • “Remembering Global Health: Before and Beyond COVID,” Nicholas Thomas, City University of Hong Kong
  • “The Effect of Nutrients on Sustainable Biochemical Produce,” Vasundhara Pattanaik, Sarah Varma, Ekaterina A. Koromyslova, Gary A. Anderson, South
    Dakota State University
  • “’Learn to Read’ and ‘Read to Learn’: Improving Reading Skills of Children in the Indian State of West Bengal,” Majumdar Manabi, Ahamed Sabir, Urba Chaudhuri, Pratichi (India) Trust
TRACK B: Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Sustainability Teaching and Research II
  • Moderator: Nikita Burrows, School of Science
  • “Environmental Humanities: Method and Exemplars,” Pankaj Jain, Flame University
  • “Process Interferences on Preserving Microorganisms in Biofertilizer Production from Biowastes,” Robiul Islam Rubel, Lin Wei, Gary Anderson, South Dakota State University
  • “A Novel Approach of Community-Engagement Practices in HE to Empower Women and Girls Considering SDG,” Fawad Naseer, Beaconhouse International College (Pakistan)
TRACK C: Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Sustainability Teaching and Research III
  • Moderator: Tony MacDonald, Urban Coast Institute
  • “Sustainable Development: People, Culture and Mindset,” Jaishree Sharma, Monmouth University
  • “Sustainable Reusing Wastewater from a Dairy Manufacturing Plant: An Interdisciplinary Approach,” Maryam Sahraei, Siavash Ebrahimzadeh, Noor Haleem, Shashikanth Sheri, South Dakota State University
  • “Women-led Climate Change Solutions (WCCS): Developing a Policy Guide from Indigenous and Immigrants Perspectives,” Jebunnessa Chapola, University of Regina (Canada)

Mid-Morning Discussion Tracks

  • Moderator: Tjeerd Boonman, Leon Hess Business School
  • “Embedding Social Change Learning Across the Curriculum: Results of a Collaborative Instructional Design Project at Georgia Tech,” Rebecca Watts Hull and Teresa Snow, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • “A Conceptual Navigation Model for Autonomous Self-Propelled Fertilizer Applicator,” Samuel Kariuki, Miriam Peter, Robiul Islam Rubel, South Dakota
    State University
  • “Reflections and Mental Health of Youth Involved in Environmental Activism,” Alyson Pompeo-Fargnoli, Melissa Alvare, Monmouth University, Kathleen Grant, The College of New Jersey
  • Moderator: Anna Sadovnikova, Leon Hess Business School
  • “Sounding Equality: Teaching a Sustainable Music History,” Thomas Irvine, University of Southampton (UK), Christopher J. Smith, Texas Tech University
  • “Faculty and Student Perceptions of Interdisciplinary Teaching Experiences,” Ekaterina Koromyslova (South Dakota State University), Anna Sadovnikova (Monmouth University), Bishnu Karki, Prafulla Salunke, Carrie Steinlicht, Gary Anderson, Todd Trooien (South Dakota State University)
  • “Active-Learning Through Student Proposals for Institutional Sustainability,” Azzam Elayan, Monmouth University

About the SDGs

In September 2015, the 193 United Nations member states adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs launched 17 goals which set a 15-year global agenda geared toward a more inclusive, sustainable future for all. At its core, these goals seek to end extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and protect our planet for future generations.

Paper Submissions

Selected and peer-reviewed submissions from this symposium will be compiled into a peer-reviewed edited volume to be published by an academic publisher. To submit a paper to our reviewers, email

Monmouth a UNAI and UGC Member

Monmouth University is a United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI) member institution. The initiative aligns institutions of higher education with the U.N. in supporting and contributing to the realization of its goals and mandates, including the promotion and protection of human rights, access to education, sustainability and conflict resolution. Click here to learn more about the UNAI and its principles.

In addition, Monmouth University is a University Global Coalition signatory. The aim of the University Global Coalition is to form a global platform of universities and other higher education organizations committed to working together and in partnership with the United Nations, the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, and other relevant organizations, in support of the Sustainable Development Goals both locally and globally through their education, research, and service missions.

Symposium Conveners

Photo of Rekha Datta, Pd.D.

Rekha Datta, Ph.D.

Freed Endowed Chair in Social Sciences

Photo of Jiwon Kim, Ph.D.

Jiwon Kim, Ph.D.

Associate Professor;
Social Studies and Foundations of Education

Nikita Burrows

Nikita Burrows, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Photo of Anna Sadovnikova

Anna Sadovnikova, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Photo of Richard Veit

Richard Veit, Ph.D.

Associate Dean;

A photo of Tony MacDonald

Tony MacDonald

Director Of The Urban Coast Institute

Questions or Comments?

Inquiries on this event may be emailed to