How a Poly High School student won a first-of-its-kind environmental award

“The children are our future.” It’s a phrase we often hear, but Poly High School senior Diana Michaelson is putting that phrase into practice. 

As the leader of the Long Beach Green Schools Campaign, Michaelson’s hard work paid off. In August, the Long Beach Unified School District unanimously approved Board Proposal 3510.1, better known as the Green School Operations – Energy and Sustainability Policy. It marked a sea change in the district’s commitment to battling climate change.

It was a battle long fought for Michaelson. Not only was the campaign successful, but Michaelson’s dedication has also earned her the first-ever Shimon Schwarzschild Award, which is given by the international nonprofit organization, Action for Nature, Inc.

The Shimon Schwarzschild Award is named after the founder of Action for Nature and was created to honor young environmentalists who are visionary thinkers.

On this week’s “The Word” podcast, we’ll hear from Acton for Nature president Beryl Kay to learn more about the selection process and what made Diana Michaelson the perfect recipient of the first Shimon Schwarzschild Award. 

Meet the LBUSD students pushing for a greener tomorrow

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Jackie Rae is a multimedia reporter for the Long Beach Post who joined in May 2021.