Thanks to my friends in environmental engineering, I’ve got a major opportunity to look forward to this spring. It’s called PowerShift 2011, and it’s happening April 15-18 in Washington D.C.

Essentially, PowerShift is a massive conference designed to educate college students all over the country about the environmental crises facing our world today. The point of this colossal convergence on the country’s capital is to empower students to join and head up grassroots sustainability initiatives: Every participant will walk away emboldened by the knowledge of his or her ability to transform how humanity is treating our world’s natural resources.

This year, PowerShift is getting serious. Among a power-packed list of keynote speakers, Al Gore has confirmed his intention to attend. If you’ve been paying attention to any part of the international global warming and climate change dialogue, you know that our former Vice President has played a vital role in raising awareness of the environmental issues facing us today. Joining him are Lisa Jackson, EPA Administrator, and many other highly influential people heading up the green revolution.

More than lectures, however, PowerShift is an amazing chance to network with students from all over the country who share your passion for sustainability. As the conference includes film festivals, workshops, panels, and service projects in the D.C. community, PowerShift truly entails an unforgettable experience. Participants even head to Capitol Hill to lobby their congressional representatives after receiving environmental leadership training.

You can register for PowerShift (or get stoked for next year’s conference) at Even if you can’t attend, I encourage you to use the website and get involved in this incredible grassroots movement.

The Earth has taken care of us for millions of years.

Don’t miss this chance to return the favor.

Lauren Potts is an NSCS member at The University of South Florida. When she’s not studying for her Mass Communications classes, she can be found longboarding, doing yoga, singing or just hanging out with friends. She also enjoys being a part of the environmental and social justice clubs on campus. She can get stoked about anything; everything is an adventure. She can be found on Twitter @laurennbrrooke.