Roosevelt University Group Makes Voice Heard in New United Nations Campaign

Under One Sky

Pictured above, from left, are MPA student James David Combs, MBA student Rachel Dalton, MPA student Mary Andoh and MBA student Amanda Hong. Not pictured but attending the rally is MBA student Shanti Patel.

CHICAGO–(ENEWSPF)–November 2, 2015.  Seventeen universal goals that could make the world a better place for all are uniting a Roosevelt University professor and a group of students to stand together this semester in far-reaching purpose and action.

While it may be ambitious, and even idealistic, to believe they can wipe out global problems like poverty, hunger, inequality and climate change, professor LaVonne Downey and members of the Roosevelt United Nations (UN) student chapter that she advises are resolute.

“We know it takes all of us working together to make change,” said Downey, a Roosevelt public administration professor and health policy expert who is also the Chicago area’s representative to the UN’s new global goals campaign.

“That’s why we’re committed this semester – and beyond – to a mission of raising awareness about the need to achieve in our lifetime the UN’s new 17 goals for sustainable development,” she said.

Downey was recently joined by Roosevelt students from the University’s Master of Public Administration (MPA) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs at a rally called “Under One Sky – Chicago, where the 17 goals were publically introduced in conjunction with a launch of the new UN campaign in New York.

“It was a chance to do outreach and to meet and network with other activists from area businesses, non-government organizations, universities and media,” said Downey of the Sept. 24 event at Chicago’s Daley Plaza where more than 200 people gathered just after sunset, lighting up the sky with hand-held flashlights, broad beams and music.

Andoh, one of the Roosevelt students in attendance, said it was amazing to be united with so many who care deeply about the same causes. “As students, we had the opportunity to read the goals and to contribute to an initiative that can positively impact our orld,” she said.

The UN’s new Sustainable Development goals are:
(1) End poverty in all its forms everywhere;

(2) End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and  promote sustainable agriculture;

(3) Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages;

(4) Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all;

(5) Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls;

(6) Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all;

(7) Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all;

(8) Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all;

(9) Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation;

(10) Reduce inequality within and among countries;

(11) Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable;

(12) Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns;

(13) Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts;

(14) Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development;

(15) Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss;

(16) Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels;
(17) Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainability.

“Working with the United Nations Association and Roosevelt’s student chapter has been one of the best experiences I’ve had while at Roosevelt,” said Andoh. “I’ve been able to be involved in so many community events and to meet people from all walks of life.”

Downey and her students currently are working on a self-published book that will look at the UN’s new goals in depth. It is to be a companion to a previous book that Downey, her students and a faculty member and students from Robert Morris University in Chicago published last year about the UN’s eight millennial goals.