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First cohort of SDG Futures Fellows completes successful program

SDG Futures Fellows

As the spring semester came to an end, the RCE Greater Atlanta’s first group of SDG Futures Fellows completed their yearlong program. This new fellowship aims to deepen the education of local higher education students about the UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), and to provide leadership training and professional development to help them take the goals and implement them in our local community.

For the 2022-23 cohort, 27 fellows were chosen from 11 Higher Education Institutions across Greater Atlanta. They worked together in seven project teams, who chose their teams based on their interest and worked on diverse projects alongside community organizations including government, nonprofit and commercial ventures. Their projects spanned a wide variety of topics and goals, from creating a voluntary local review of progress on the SDGs for the City of Atlanta, to creating social media marketing campaign for a platform that supports socially impactful businesses across the country.

Apart from working on their specific projects, the fellowship provided fundamental knowledge about the UN SDGs, focusing on their local implementations by featuring various social, governmental, and climate centric organizations from Greater Atlanta.

Aditya Desai (M.S. GA Tech ’23) helped lead the program. He said, “I think the first iteration of the SDG Futures Fellowship has been incredibly successful.” He credits the other people who helped develop the program, “the ingenious minds of fellow students Julie Chen, Erica Zheng, and Audrey Rader, along with the constant guidance from Georgia Tech's Kris Chatfield, and KSU's Lola Owokoniran and Tameka Womack.” The program was made possible by support from our sponsors: AGREC and Georgia Tech CIBER. In the coming years, Aditya hopes “we can scale it so that it reaches more universities and students in metro Atlanta with even more partners, projects, and educational events.” However, to reach these aspirational heights, we will need both logistical and monetary support, so if you are willing and able to contribute, please reach out to Kris Chatfield.

You can hear more about a project completed by one of the SDG Futures Fellows, Adair Garrett. On our podcast Global Goals, Greater Atlanta, she discusses putting together a voluntary local review of the SDGs for the City of Atlanta, plus thoughts on climate anxiety and having hope for our future.