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Associate professor spending semester in Germany to teach climate change

Dr. Andy Jorgensen is spending spring semester in Lüneburg, Germany, to help students understand the vastly changing global climate.

“I wanted to make a contribution to students and the world through teaching climate change because it is a very important topic that people need to know more about,” the UT associate professor of chemistry said.

Dr. Andy Jorgensen, front row center, posed for a photo at the Hamburg Museum of History with students from one of the classes he is teaching at Leuphana University in Lüneburg, Germany, this semester.

Dr. Andy Jorgensen, front row center, posed for a photo at the Hamburg Museum of History with students from one of the classes he is teaching at Leuphana University in Lüneburg, Germany, this semester.

Jorgensen is one of a number of faculty members from across the United States who are participating in a University Studies Abroad Consortium that allows professors and students to spend anywhere from a semester to a year abroad.

“I’ve always been an avid traveler and I studied German in high school and college, so I thought, why not?” he said.

Jorgensen is teaching the course Chemistry and Society as well as a new one, Responding to the Challenge of Climate Change, at Leuphana University. His students are Americans who are in Germany to master the language, but then also take other classes. The new class will analyze how the global climate is being affected by our daily activities, and how to adapt and find solutions to the challenges of change.

While in Germany, he will attend a conference on chemistry and climate change.

Jorgensen has long been a leader in climate change instruction and research. The American Chemical Society’s Committee on Environmental Improvement chose him as one of five recipients of its 2013 award for incorporating sustainability into chemistry education.

He also has an appointment as a senior fellow at the National Council for Science and the Environment, where he began his climate change education work while on sabbatical in 2008-09.

In addition to his teaching and research at UT, Jorgensen has given many presentations about climate change at schools, the Toledo Zoo and other venues across the country.

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