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Michelle Tang receives Lucky Hinkle Sustainability award

Friday, May. 24, 2013

Established to honor the memory of Lucky Hinkle, longtime University staff member who worked diligently to promote recycling on campus, this award is given to the graduating senior with a declared major in Environmental Science or Environmental Studies who, in the judgment of the ESS faculty, has made the most significant contribution to promoting a culture of sustainability at Santa Clara University and beyond.

The 2013 winner of the Lucky Hinkle Sustainability award is Michelle Tang.

Michelle has done so much to advance sustainability on our campus and in our community that it may be impossible to list all of her accomplishments. Michelle participated in the Sustainability Decathlon even before coming to SCU – this was as a high school student at Silver Creek. Once here at SCU, she volunteered as a mentor, then as a peer leader, for the decathlon. 

Michelle was instrumental in convincing Dining Services to move away from landfill soda cups to compostable cups, paving the way for compostablility now being written into our vendor contracts.

Michelle brought the eco fashion show to SCU, and led it all three years. 300 students attended this year! Michelle brought the Swap for Good to SCU, and led that all three years. She has been instrumental in developing Sustainability student leadership programs such as SCOOPS. In addition to all of this, Michelle has worked as the Program Coordinator and Environmental Educator for BUG, the Bronco Urban Gardens, and as a WildZones Play Day Coordinator. 

Michelle completed at least four internships that fulfilled ESS standards. During her mega-internship last summer with the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, Michelle explored community health issues, exhibiting a strong commitment to environmental justice and human solidarity.  In like manner, she has had a significant impact on the people of the Alma community, here at home, for the past three years, and here at SCU, as a multi-year intern for the Office of Sustainability.

And, she has done all this while directing the MCC this year, and being in student leadership positions across campus: she is former president of the Vietnamese student association, and a former officer for GREEN club, just to name a few. Whenever there was a service or tabling opportunity - be it Earth Day or Water Week - Michelle has been part of it. 

Michelle has sustained her service commitments while maintaining the highest academic standards as she moved through the ESS curriculum.  As Michelle leaves ESS to pursue a career as a teacher, having committed two years to post-secondary education in a low-income public school through the Teach For America Corps, she takes our hearts and our warmest congratulations with her.