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Graduation 2017

Albina Ruiz - Speaker - Graduation 2017

Albina Ruiz


Albina Ruiz is an environmentalist, entrepreneur and social activist born in Moyobamba, Peru. She is the founder and leader of Ciudad Saludable, an organization dedicated to the construction of healthy and inclusive communities, where everyone can live in harmony, justice and equal opportunities, promoting a model of environmental citizenship and sustainable management for mitigation and adaptation to climate change from the inclusive recycling value chain. Read MoreShe is a member of the World Economic Forum, leader of the AVINA Foundation, member of Ashoka-Lemelson, member of the Association of Social Entrepreneurs, Schwab Foundation and Skoll Social Entrepreneur Foundation and also an honorary member of the RSA – Royal Society for Development of the Arts, all in the work that is done in the environmental issue and in a special way with the recicladores.Albina was the only woman while specializing in industrial engineering at the National University of Engineering of Peru. Later she obtained a Master’s degree in Ecology and Environmental Management from the Ricardo Palma University and a PhD in Chemistry from the Ramón Llull University in Barcelona. In her native Moyobamba, she never knew the term waste because everything that is used is recycled. She arrived in Lima to study and live in El Agustíno, a place where garbage was most abundant. Her interest in converting waste land into employment opportunities led her to conduct a test on environmental sanitation microenterprises to offer the service of waste collection with tricycles. She discovered that many people lived on garbage, especially women and decided to work on the transformation of these people: from informal recyclers to entrepreneurs. In 2002, she founded Ciudad Saludable, whose social purpose seeks to turn garbage collection into a profitable business. The model of Ciudad Saludable is summarized in the integral management of solids with social and economic inclusion of recyclers (men and women). In Peru, the initiative has more than 11,000 recyclers, who handle the collection of waste from nine million urban and rural homes, with the support of municipalities, the population and students.

The recyclers not only have training in technical aspects, but also on leadership, business organization, public speaking and corporal expression. Albina and Ciudad Saludable have received several awards and recognitions: Awarded with the condecoration of the “Golden Palm of Merit” “, as an illustrious person, by the Association of Departmental Clubs of Peru, Lima April 26, 2016, Global Green Future Leadership Award, CSR World Congress, February 2015, Awarded as Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2013, EMPRENDEPUCP, Lima, Peru, November 2013, Winner of the “Change of Markets” Award – 16 to the IBF-GIZ International Business Forum, Istanbul, Turkey, November 2013, San Martin Regional Government Award as Sanmartinense Woman Outstanding – International Women’s Day, Tarapoto, San Martín, Perú, March 2013, SATO Award given by the Rotary Club, Lima, Peru, October 2012, RSA Albert Medal Award for 2011, granted by the Willingsworth Tipton High School in the United Kingdom, sponsored by the Academy, November 2011, Equity Award 2011, awarded by Global Fairness Initi Washington, November 2011, PEPSICO, “Performance with Purpose” Award, July 2010, World Energy Award Prize Belgium-Brussels May 2008, Earth category, 2007 Global Development Network Award, to the most innovative project on development issues, sponsored by the Government of Japan, within the framework of the Ninth Annual GDN Conference, held in Brisbane Australia, Albina Ruiz, Dubai International Award, for Best Practices to Improve the Environment 2006, Organized by: The United Nations and the Municipality of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. To the Best Practices to Improve the Environment 2006, Skoll Award 2006, to expand a Solid Waste Management System for the Foundation of Housing and Creation of Free Cities, granted by the Skoll Foundation, among many others.

Michael Besancon

Michael Besancon

Honorary Degree

Michael Besancon is the former Senior Global Vice President of Purchasing, Communications and Distribution for Whole Foods Market where he also chaired the National Green Mission Task Force. He recently became a member of the Product Advisory Board for Frequentz. He has more than 40 years of experience in the natural and organic foods industry, having spent his career as an advocate for sustainability in agriculture and promoting environmental awareness on a global level. Learn more about Michael

Mark J. Ohrstrom

Mark J. Ohrstrom

Honorary Degree

Mark Ohrstrom is the President and Chief Investment Officer at Larkspur Management, Inc. and also serves on several boards including Rockwood Service Corporation, Advanced Systems Technology, Inc., Piedmont Environmental Council, Oak View National Bank, and Shenandoah University where he received his undergraduate degree magna cum laude. Mark has served for many years on the EARTH University Foundation Board of Directors, including eight years as President. In addition, Mark serves on the EARTH Investment Committee. Mark works tirelessly on behalf of EARTH and is a passionate supporter; often remarking that “of all the things I do, EARTH is the best thing I do.” Together with his wife Karin and family, Mark provides scholarship support to many students, particularly a number from Jamaica, a country where he and his family spend time each year.

In addition to sharing a powerful commitment to EARTH, Michael and Mark have also become close friends. They have literally traversed continents together in the name of EARTH, and they are always seeking new challenges and adventures where they can apply their mutual passion for making the world a better place.

Graduation Week Activities

(Updated 11/17/2017)

  1. 02:00 – 04:15 p.m.
    Campus Tours Buses depart from the Library roundabout Optional activity for those interested in getting to know EARTH’s Guácimo campus
  2. 07:00 – 09:00 p.m.
    Heliconia Awards Place: Gymnasium Joyful ceremony to recognize outstanding graduating students who embody the values of EARTH University
  1. 08:00 – 09:15 a.m.
    Campus Tours Place: Buses depart from the Library roundabout Optional activity for those interested in getting to know EARTH’s Guácimo campus
  2. 10:00 – 11:30 a.m. 
    Gratitude Service
    Place: Ecumenical Chapel
    Opportunity for graduating students and their families to reflect and give thanks for their accomplishments
  3. 01:15 – 01:40 p.m. 
    Flag Raising  Place: Plaza of the Americas (in front of Library) Official ceremony honoring the many countries represented in the student body
  4. 01:40 – 02:00 p.m. 
    Unveiling of the “Hijos de la Tierra” mural  Celebration of our community’s values and beliefs, through the unveiling of a mural by renowned artist Karl “Mata Ruda” Miller
  5. 02:15 – 04:00 p.m.  
    Record Signing
    Place: Gymnasium 
    Official ceremony in which students sign the legal record certifying their completion of graduation requirements
  6. 07:00 – 09:00 p.m.
    Celebratory Dinner  Place: President’s residence Formal banquet hosted by EARTH University President Arturo Condo for graduating students and their guests
  1. 07:00 – 08:00 a.m.
    Photo Session Place: Plaza of the Americas Photographic session for graduating students and University authorities
  2. 09:00 – 12:00 noon
    Graduation Ceremony  Place: Gymnasium  Official graduation ceremony for the Class of 2017
  3. 12:00 – 01:00 p.m. 
    Honor Lunch  Place: Gymnasium Post-graduation meal to honor graduates, their relatives and special guests

The University offers complimentary transportation to and from these events. Transportation departs 30 minutes prior to the start of each activity, from the roundabout in front of the W.K. Kellogg Library