To the Young Changemakers of the World
This year, we celebrated our seventh class of EE 30 Under 30, recognizing the inspiring work and vital voices of young changemakers across the globe who are using the power of education to build more sustainable communities.
Each year we also hear from hundreds of nominees who are leading massive change collectively, making it clear that the EE 30 Under 30 are just the tip of the iceberg of the talent, passion, and perseverance of youth worldwide who are stepping forward to create the change we need for a sustainable and equitable future. Young people are spearheading efforts and speaking up to challenge the status quo, whether it’s fighting climate change, systemic racism, or the lack of youth representation in decision making.
So, to all the young leaders, educators, activists, entrepreneurs, students, dreamers, and doers out there—this is a celebration of you!
This is a celebration of you because you make us hopeful for the future. You remind us that we are not alone in this fight. You are innovating and holding us accountable. You are making sure that more people have access to quality environmental education and have the tools to make informed decisions for their communities. You are joining forces with others, uniting for collective action. When we asked the EE 30 Under 30 what makes them optimistic for the future, the resounding answer was…you!
You are not carrying this weight alone, but we know the going can get tough. When it does, take a few breaths, check in with yourself, and remember the following bits of advice from the EE 30 Under 30 Class of 2022:
1. You’re capable.
Believe in who you are and what you're capable of. Don't be afraid to make mistakes, as those are the moments that make you so unique. You can and you will! – Hazel Araujo
2. Failure is OK!
So often we limit what we do because we are afraid of failing, we’re afraid to look silly or dumb. That fear minimizes what we do, and it’s only when we accept failure that we are able to push ourselves past our limits and achieve new heights. – Rae Landriau
3. You are your greatest resource.
Start now; start today. Tomorrow is not assured. You are the greatest resource and asset you’ve got. Do not discount small beginnings. – Eva Makandi
4. Think collectively.
Individually, our impact is small; together, it’s infinite. When we have shared goals, clear motives, and direct campaigns, we really can enact meaningful and lasting change. – Ajani Stella