Who We Are
Sandy Wallenstein, Ed.D., Principal
With thirty plus years of experience, I am building a team of passionate, tenacious, and honest folks, young and old, who want to help solve the climate crisis in educational settings.
I started GreenUp Learning
for 2 reasons:
1. About 10 years ago, the urgent message coming from climate scientists, “The earth is hurting”, hooked me. I have always felt a strong, palpable connection to nature, the wilder – the better. At this point, 2012, climate scientists have demonstrated loud and clear – that humans are destroying the planet. The time to build a movement to save the planet is now! GreenUp Learning will contribute to this movement!
2. Education has been my lifelong passion. So, focusing on schools, colleges, and the next generation makes perfect sense. My goal with GreenUp Learning is to reach out to the next generation, and help them face, solve, and adapt to the planet’s climate crisis.
The climate message is so often riddled with doom and gloom. My approach is optimistic, forever opening doors and encouraging students to pursue their line of questioning to reach innovative solutions.
How did I get here?
Through more than thirty years of experience in educational reform, environmental education, curriculum design, and program management.
Below are snapshots of the salient highlights of my professional life:
I was the founding Chair of the Education Department at John F. Kennedy University (JFKU), where I started a teacher credential and Master’s degree program focused on the whole child, interdisciplinary learning, and in depth training in cultural diversity. At JFKU, I was a full time professor in the Liberal Studies and Education Departments, as well as President of the faculty senate.
I worked in the K12 arena as the Director of Curriculum for the Ross Valley School District in Marin County, CA. In this role, I headed up professional development for 60 elementary and middle school teachers, facilitated the school textbook adoption process, and supported teachers in addressing standards competency and compliance at their grade levels. Several schools received California Distinguished School recognition during this period.
My experience in the environmental field included building a network of more than 100 non-profit organizations in order to streamline and coordinate environmental education activities in the San Francisco North Bay. As executive director, I raised one million dollars to support staff and ongoing projects (e.g. bringing local, organic food to schools, supporting green business start ups, providing high school environmental internships). I then spent two years at the North Bay Conservation Corps as the Education Manager, heading up their AmeriCorps and recycling programs.
More recently, I served as Education Director for Strategic Energy Innovations (SEI), a non-profit in San Rafael, California committed to helping schools and colleges, small businesses, local governments, and affordable housing agencies reduce pollution and save money through energy and resource efficiency and training. At SEI, I delved into learning about climate science and directed regional and statewide energy education programs in schools and community colleges.
My Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, Master’s degree in Education in Social Contexts, and Doctorate in Curriculum Theory, are all from the University of Rochester, Rochester, New York.
I’m ready to roll. The time is NOW.