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Resilient Newark Colloquium on Sustainability

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Prasanna Tati

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Resilient Newark: Colloquium on Sustainability

Prasanna Tati

The Resilient Newark Colloquium took place last Wednesday in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Albert Dorman Honors College; it was funded by both the Honors College and the NJIT Center for Natural Resources Development and Protection (NRDP). Students and faculty from area universities attended the event on water sustainability in Newark. In particular, the presenters each discussed their research focus and even announced that they are looking for new members to join their team.

Michel Boufadel is the director of the NRDP, an internationally recognized sustainability research center known for its long-term studies of the Exxon Valdez and Gulf of Mexico oil spills and Hurricane Sandy. The center founded in 2012 is focusedon assessing pollution and evaluating the potential production of renewable energy through various sources. The research of the NRDP is widespread in its lens and has been published in prestigious journals like Nature.

Moshe Kam, Dean of the Newark College of Engineering, former Department Head of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Drexel University, and former CEO of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (the world’s largest professional technical organization), stressed the importance of the use of sensors in detecting and estimating data for water sustainability. Dr. Kam has worked on various projects for the government and has been funded by the NSF on multiple occasions; he has published extensively in the areas of research where his interests lie.

Jeffrey Featherstone, Director of the Center for Sustainable Communities and Chair of the Community and Regional Planning Department at Temple University, presented on topics focused on studying areas like the Pennypack Watershed for water resource management. His contact info is as follows: jeffrey.featherstone@temple.edu

Douglas Gaffney, Deputy Leader of Coastal Engineering at Hatch Mott MacDonald, is a renowned innovator in Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM), Climate Change Adaptation, and ecosystem restoration. His interests are interdisciplinary, but he has a special interest in geosynthetics. He detailed various projects on the restoration and importance of the Newark Bay and Passaic River to people in Newark, especially for drinking water.

Julio Figueroa, from the NJIT College of Architecture and Design, recounted a high school program he ran over the summer with his firm called the Newark Beautification Landscape Initiative that focused on relatable projects like painting murals, cleaning up the city, gardening, and ensuring that there were welcoming spaces for residents and visitors. Figueroa prided himself in utilizing the youth of Newark to take initiative in civic duty and truly embody the resilience of Newark.