Focus on Scholarships: Addressing environmental issues through advocacy and awareness raising
By UWCSEA Foundation
In our third Focus on Scholarships story, we highlight a scholar who dedicates their time to caring for the environment. A passion that was instilled in him during his time at the College.
It was a UWCSEA school field trip to Penang that inspired Jorge, Class of 1987 and scholar from Mexico, to dedicate his life to protecting the environment: “The complexity and intricacies of living, biological systems as well as their fragility made me realise the importance of working towards environmental issues and conservation.”
That realisation led him to complete a degree in Chemistry and Biology at the University of Texas, followed by a Masters in Fisheries Science at Texas A&M. His professional career began in aquaculture as a hatchery manager for two abalone culture facilities in California and, after a detour working in the wine industry, he founded Aero-Environmental Consulting in Monterey, USA, together with his wife, Leah, in 2002.
As an advocate for clean and not 'dirty' industries, Jorge established the company to promote and encourage sustainable environmental practices. His team currently works closely with private and state-owned companies to identify and resolve issues such as air quality, energy conservation, waste reduction and microbial hazards, among others.
Jorge’s passion for the environment continues in spare time through voluntary work at Monterey Aquarium, something he has been doing for over 20 years. Having become a certified diver during his time at UWCSEA, he enjoys leading the ‘feeding shows’ as it allows him to interact with the wonderful marine life of Monterey Bay and raise awareness of ocean conservation to visitors to the attraction.
While climate change and ocean acidification seem to be getting worse, not better, I am hopeful that with active conservation, energy-efficient industries, education, and responsible governments, we might be able to make a positive change to our planet. The UWC values and principles that I acquired at that young age were instrumental in shaping who I am, my beliefs, my appreciation for this planet and for the richness and diversity of all human beings.”