Jenn Tribble

My name's Jenn Tribble. I'm from Texas. I go to school at the University of California, Los Angeles where I am a PhD Neuroscience candidate.


What got you interested in sustainability?

My interest in sustainability arose from a combination of watching documentaries, enjoying nature, and understanding how my actions and choices can make such a positive or negative impact on the future of our resources. Moving from Texas to California opened my eyes to a number of environmental challenges and concerns, and open conversations with friends and family unearthed my passion for protecting and sustaining our world for future generations.

What sustainability, energy, and mobility issues are important to you?

I am primarily compelled by climate change and the shift toward renewables, the effects of food production, and preservation of non-human species. Out of these, I am most passionate about mitigation and adaptation strategies to combat climate change. As the transportation sector remains a primary contributor to carbon production and driver of climate change, I want to better understand how to make social, economic, and science-driven arguments to push for more sustainable modes of transportation.

What exciting projects/research are you working on now?

I’m just starting to get my feet wet in sustainability work, but Los Angeles is an amazing place to be for it! I am working with Food Forward, a local non-profit that rescues produce from backyard gleans and farmers markets to donate to hunger relief agencies - it’s a two bird one stone approach that seeks to eliminate food waste while providing food to the hungry. I am also working with WWF as one of their Panda Ambassadors, and will work closely with their administration and volunteers on projects to raise awareness about environmental challenges. 

What are your plans for the next five years?

My most immediate goal is to finish my PhD, which will hopefully be complete in the next two years. After graduate school, I hope to transition into policy through either a science policy fellowship such as the AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowship, or through getting a position directly in the government. As a biomedical researcher who is passionate about the environment and sustainability, I hope to use my experience and interests to push for evidence-based decision making, and policies based on sound scientific knowledge.

What made you want to apply to SISE?

In the near future, I hope to work in a position that bridges science, policy, and society such that science is both by the people and for the people. SISE immediately caught my attention as the perfect opportunity to explore these three areas within the broader subject of sustainability, which has quickly changed from a topic I’d read about in the news to the area driving my career goals. I can’t wait to spend two weeks learning, exploring, and discussing with the other SISE’rs!

What are you most looking forward to doing in the city?

Food… food… and did I mention, food? I love exploring different cuisines and flavors, and Chicago seems like one of the best cities to explore a variety of different types of food. I also love being out on the water, so hopefully there is time for kayaking or canoeing! Another passion of mine is photography, so I hope to get the opportunity to photograph different neighborhoods around the city.

Do you like cats? If not, are you willing to learn to like cats?

I love cats, in particular my cat, Starbuck!