For the past seven years USGBC has made Greenbuild accessible to people who would otherwise not be able to attend through a scholarship program. At last year’s Greenbuild, 156 individuals received some type of scholarship to Greenbuild. Scholarship recipients represent a diversity of people from around the world. Each has a story to tell. Each brings their own passion to their work. Each has a role to play in making green buildings and communities a reality for all.
As we lead up to Greenbuild 2015 in Washington, D.C., we will highlight a handful of the awesome individuals who joined us in New Orleans last year. We welcome these folks to the USGBC community and encourage you to follow their stories.
What is your hometown? Chelsea, MA
Where do you live now? Cambridge, MA
Did you represent any USGBC partner organizations as a scholarship recipient? YouthBuild USA
Tell us a little about yourself. Hello all! My name is Brandon Menjares I am 22 years of age and am I a young professional. Currently I am enrolled in Bunker Hill Community College pursuing my associates degree in human services. I have been involved with YouthBuild for four years, two as a student on the local level and the past two years as a graduate leader at the national level. Currently I am working at YouthBuild USA with the advocacy department. I came to know USGBC through the good folks with the Green initiatives team at YBUSA.
Who would you invite to your dream dinner party? I would invite all the amazing people I met throughout my time at Greenbuild!
If you could be a superhero, who would you be? I would definitely be a super hero with the ability to fly or teleport. That way I would be able to visit all the people I've come to know who are scattered around the world.
What drove you to apply for the Greenbuild scholarship? Last year I was working on a landscaping job in a temple yard in my hometown of Chelsea, MA, with YouthBuild Just-A-Start. Growing up, my friends and I would play in that place after school. We were just kids then and not to concerned about how we treated the area. You could say that my job revitalizing the landscape was a time to reap what I had sown! As the project went on, I began to grow fond of the changes we were making in the yard. It was being restored it to it former condition from when I was a kid playing there. I began to wonder: how can my community have let this and the other limited green spaces in our small city deteriorate? It was at this time I learned about the scholarship. Naturally I thought attending Greenbuild would help me generate ideas and learn methods to tackle these issues that my community faces. I came to Greenbuild to find answers!
The thing that inspired me the most at Greenbuild was: Being able to meet people from all over the nation who we working towards a common cause.
The most interesting thing I learned at Greenbuild was: The Affordable Homes & Sustainable Communities Summit where I heard about the concept of Eco-Aparthied and its effects communities as a whole.
The most fun I had a Greenbuild was: The live concert on the Super Dome field. It was absolutely amazing!
The coolest person I met at Greenbuild was: Hands down Ryan Snow.
What are your next steps or aspirations after attending Greenbuild? My next steps started with committing to live a greener life style and be more environmentally conscious. I understand that sharing my experience's is also raising the awareness in my community. I will lead by example by patterning/volunteering my time for local green projects or community's service events in the city. Also, I am able to speak to certain environmental issues when I am at the Massachusetts Statehouse in Boston. My input can influence my chief of staff by explaining why certain bills should be prioritized.