Summit to Showcase Roles for Women in a 'Green Economy'

Summit to Showcase Roles for Women in a 'Green Economy'

Rutgers partners with state agencies, other universities to explore workforce needs

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. – “Green Now! Women Leading the Way in Science & Technology,” a daylong conference on Friday, June 5, in West Windsor will explore the ways environmentalism is creating the potential for unprecedented job opportunities in New Jersey, especially for women.

Rutgers University Center for Women and Work, Rutgers’ Master in Business and Science program and the university’s Office for the Promotion of Women in Science, Engineering and Mathematics are among the sponsors of the event.

The conference represents the third annual Women in the Science and Technology Workforce Summit of the New Jersey State Employment and Training Commission Council on Gender Parity in Labor and Education. The council oversees the state’s efforts to provide gender equity in labor, education and training.  

More than 200 industry professionals, educators, researchers, students and policymakers are expected to attend the event, which will take place at the Conference Center at the Mercer County Community College, 1200 Old Trenton Road, West Windsor, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

A video by Lisa Jackson, administrator of the federal Environmental Protection Agency, will kick off the conference. Before President Obama named her to head the EPA, Jackson most recently served as New Jersey Commissioner of Environmental Protection.

Following Jackson’s recorded remarks, Rutgers’ John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development will present a session on green jobs – those in the environmental or agricultural sectors – and their place in New Jersey’s economy. 

In addition, a panel will explore the state’s green initiatives in education and the workforce. Panelists for “It Is Easier Than You Think to Be Green” will include: Kenny Esser, chief energy advisor to Governor Jon S. Corzine; Florence Block, executive director of U.S. Green Building Council, New Jersey office; Valerie Montecalvo, president and chief executive officer of Bayshore Recycling; and Safiyah Sadiq, co-founder of the Barack Obama Charter School for Academic Excellence in Plainfield.

Rutgers’ Center for Women and Work (CWW) conducts research and sponsors programs promoting gender equity, a high-skill economy, and public and workplace policies. CWW is located in the School of Management and Labor Relations at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.

Other co-sponsors of the conference include the New Jersey State Employment and Training Commission, WIRED Bio‐1, DeVry University, Fairleigh Dickinson University, the New Jersey Higher Education Recruitment Consortium, Princeton University, and the Nontraditional Career Resource Center at Rutgers’ Center for Women and Work.

Bio-1 is a partnership designed to make central New Jersey the next hot spot for the global bioscience industry by helping to create an even more skilled bioscience workforce and increasing the number of job opportunities available in the region. 

It operates with a $5.1 million grant awarded through the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and the Training Administration’s Workforce Innovation in Regional Economic Development (WIRED) initiative.

Breakout sessions at the conference will focus on emerging fields in the green workforce; sustainability policies, and how they translate into initiatives, for education and workforce development; re-tooling incumbent workers for green jobs; and undergraduate science education for a new workforce.

Registration is free but required. Participants can sign up at the Center for Women and Work’s website:, or click here.


Media Contact: Sandra Lanman
732-932-7084, ext. 621