More than 160 AASCU presidents, provosts, faculty, staff,
and students joined AASCU President Mildred García, former Secretary of State
John Kerry, and former Ohio Governor John Kasich on September 9 for a
conversation about the World War Zero initiative, climate change, and the
importance of civic engagement.
Kerry, Kasich, and others launched the World War Zero
coalition in 2019. Its goal is to drive 10 million climate conversations in
2020 and to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. The work focuses on how people
in the U.S. and around the globe need to join together across party affiliation
and ideology to combat climate change and ensure a healthy world for
generations to come.
During the webinar, Kerry and Kasich spoke with candor about
the polarization people in the U.S. are facing, how the nation has arrived at
this point, and what we all can do to speak to our “better angels.” They also discussed
how the work of combating climate change draws on campuses’ historic roles as
innovators and how AASCU institutions can prepare a future workforce that will
lead America toward a clean energy economy and create millions of new jobs.
Attendees asked about a range of topics, including the
speakers’ opinions on nuclear energy and how to effect larger-scale cultural
change. Kerry and Kasich stressed the importance of voting, especially student
voter turnout, as an urgent call to action for the upcoming election and the
need to build from ground up and hold leaders accountable.
García closed the program by highlighting the role of AASCU
institutions as Stewards of Place and partners in this work to create a more
equitable and sustainable future.
Watch a recording
of the webinar.
Former Secretary of State
John Kerry (left) and former Governor John Kasich (right) discussed the World
War Zero initiative during the AASCU webinar “Not Politics as Usual: a Conversation With Former Secretary of State John
Kerry and Former Governor John Kasich.”