My name is Michio Agresta and I am a rising senior Natural Resources and the Environment major with minors in Human Rights and Spanish. My family is from Burlington, CT, and I grew up hiking and mountain biking in the 160 miles of trails located across the town. My academic interests are heavily involved with environmental and social justice activism, as I am the president of UConn Fridays for Future and the Historian/Treasurer for UConn Collaborative Organizing. Outside of school, I enjoy most outdoor activities, including hiking, skiing, mountain biking, and skateboarding. Additionally, I am a huge fan of most music and love genres such as Rnb, Hip Hop, Indie Rock, and Soul/Funk. A current favorite album I’ve been enjoying this summer is Cola by A Beacon School if any of you would like to take a listen.
I wanted to be a NRCA Difference Maker Mentor because I loveworking with youth and I value the mentorship and guidance that younger people need in order to fulfill their potentials and dreams. Creating a sense of responsibility towards our environments and communities is also highly important in my eyes, and I was passionate about passing on my own knowledge to others which this position allowed me to do. When talking about community environmental action and what it means to me, it’s my belief that everyone holds a stake in how our environment is treated, and the policies/actions that are taken are pivotal in this. As humans, we rely on the environment for food, water, recreation, and so much more, and that is why it is key that as a community we must take action since everyone holds a similar stake in the success of conservation work.
I think a unique asset that I bring to NRCA community projects is my knowledge and connections with environmental organizations in CT, as well as my past experience with trail mapping and ArcGIS software. I think the first is highly useful in creating good connections and support for the students’ projects, as well as allowing me to provide my knowledge on environmental justice to them rather than the typical environmental studies/sciences that are taught in school. Additionally, having skills in trail mapping and ArcGIS are valuable for projects because many students tend to enjoy trail mapping and there are many ways that spatial data can be used for the projects in general. I hope to gain valuable experience with mentorship, field work, and furthering my relationships with local conservation organizations throughout my time with the NRCA.