About My Climate Story

My Climate Story is a public research project that encourages participants to consider global climate change on a personal scale, initiated and supported by the Penn Program in Environmental Humanities (PPEH) at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

The project’s instructional videos, live workshops, and storybank aim to put climate literacy tools in teachers’ hands and to transform Philadelphians’ understanding of climate as a problem of techno-science into a matter of concern for all peoples. My Climate Story recognizes climate literacy as essential to the health of democratic society and works to democratize who can talk about climate change.

In workshops for aspiring storytellers from the sixth grade on up, My Climate Story has generated hundreds of accounts of how Philadelphians are experiencing climate change–and how those changes are making us feel. Climate stories from the workshops are, with author permission, included in My Climate Story’s public storybank, a resource for exploring how diverse individuals are making meaning of changes more typically measured in quantitative measures of atmospheric CO2 or sea levels and their rates of change. Workshop groups receive all submitted stories as a collection for their further development.

My Climate Story started as a public storytelling and story-sharing campaign designed to document how members of Penn’s community were experiencing climate change. Our commitment to getting people of diverse ages and backgrounds to talk about climate change has since expanded to become a series of interactive, customized workshops for climate storytellers ranging from sixth grade to university professors, creating climate conversations and guiding participants to recognize how local climate impacts are affecting their lives in the here and now–and shaping their life stories. 

My Climate Story trains individuals to become workshop facilitators in their local community. All workshops are customized and offered free of cost. Contact us if you are interested in learning more!

crocuses in bloom. as climate change intensifies we might start to see them bloom at different times every year.

The My Climate Story Team

Bethany Wiggin

Bethany Wiggin

Founding Faculty Director, Penn Program in Environmental Humanities & Professor of German Languages and Literature

Christy Choo

Christy Choo

MCS Public Research Intern, AY 22-23

Aman Sharma

Aman Sharma

MCS Public Research Intern, AY 22-23

Maria Villareal Simon

Maria Villareal Simon

MCS Public Research Intern, AY 22-23

Mia D'Avanza

Mia D'Avanza

PPEH Program Coordinator, MCS Storybank Website

Angela Faranda

Angela Faranda

PPEH Program Coordinator, Administrative Support

Philadelphia My Climate Story Teachers

Freda or Frankie Anderson

Freda or Frankie Anderson

African American History and World History Teacher at Academy at Palumbo in South Philadelphia

Mariaeloisa Carambo

Mariaeloisa Carambo

History Teacher at Paul Robeson High School in West Philadelphia

Anna Herman

Anna Herman

Urban Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources (AFNR) Management Educator at the U School in North Philadelphia

Monica Rowley

Monica Rowley

English Teacher at Masterman High School in Fairmount

Matthew Scanlan

Matthew Scanlan

Environmental Science Teacher and Dean of Students at Northeast High School in Northeast Philadelphia

Christopher Sikich

Christopher Sikich

AP Biology, Honors Biology, Biology, Anatomy and Physiology, Environmental Science Teacher at Philadelphia High School for Girls in Olney

Avery Stern

Avery Stern

English and Climate Change Studies Teacher at Kensington CAPA in Kensington

Joni Woods

Joni Woods

English Teacher at Academy at Palumbo in South Philadelphia

Rebecca Yacker

Rebecca Yacker

Dual Enrollment Coordinator in the English and History Dept. at Saul High School in Roxborough

2023 My Philadelphia Climate Story Climate Heroes

Amani Sweeper

Amani Sweeper

2023 Climate Hero

I am a published poet, writer and dabble in art. I participate in theatre and enjoy acting. Writing is my main passion and I’m very passionate about the science behind climate change.

Eva Parker

Eva Parker

2023 Climate Hero

My name is Eva Parker. I’m a ninth grader at Academy At Palumbo. I enjoy art, gardening, Baking, and Video games. My mom has always been an activist for many things in the past and she has influenced me to do the same!

Deveena Derrick

Deveena Derrick

2023 Climate Hero

My name is Deveena Derick. I am currently a 10th grade student at Julia R. Masterman. I was born and raised in Philadelphia by my parents who moved from Kerala, India. Literature has always interested me since childhood and I love hearing stories, they tell a lot about a person.

Aster Chau

Aster Chau

2023 Climate Hero

My name is Aster Chau, I’m a fourteen year old freshman at the Academy at Palumbo. Some of my passions include reading, poetry, and community involvement. My fascination within the climate crisis was sparked in my world history class and further progressed at “Listen Up! Climate Stories and Philadelphia Youth.”

Tori Okorodudu

Tori Okorodudu

2023 Climate Hero

A Philadelphia native, I have always enjoyed exploring cities and learning about new places. I also love expressing myself through creative writing and filmmaking. I hope to change people’s perspectives on the world through the things I create, and I have a great passion for stories, music, politics, and fashion.

Isabelle Smith-Santos

Isabelle Smith-Santos

2023 Climate Hero

Hello. My name is Bella and I am in tenth grade at Julia R. Masterman. I was born and raised in Philadelphia, PA but occasionally travel to other places. My favorite hobbies are reading and writing. I love the art of literature and how we can use it to explore different stories and tell our own history.

Yinle Chen

Yinle Chen

2023 Climate Hero

My name is Yinle Chen, a freshman at the Academy at Palumbo High School. I am passionate about combating the toxic climate change that we’re currently experiencing. As this journey progresses, I hope to expand my understanding and knowledge of conducting interviews, writing about climate issues, and effectively communicating the negative impacts of climate change. I am also dedicated to my studies and strive for academic excellence. In my spare time, I enjoy playing volleyball and exploring various places. I am determined to make the most of this opportunity and create a brighter future for myself and my community. 

Josh Sturgis

2023 Climate Hero

Hi my name is Josh Sturgis, I’m a student at the U school, I’m in 12th grade. I wanna get better at writing, I’ve written like 20 books on google docs or so. I kinda want to become an author one day possibly.  I still need to work on my writing a lot honestly. I write all teen books, like sci-fi, fantasy and others.

Kylie Wilson

2023 Climate Hero

My name is Kylie Wilson. My passions are made up of drawing, nature, and writing. My dreams in life are to be an aspiring author, making and publishing my own books or novels for others to take inspiration from. And to be a child-psychologist, working with young children to help them express themselves and use healthy communication skills. Animals are one of the greatest parts of life for me, I have a cat myself—and hope to adopt many more in the near-future. Part of the reason I adore nature so much is because of the beautiful animals that come with it, and plants/flowers. I would even consider living somewhere close to nature and all of its aspects in the future as well. 

Past My Climate Story Interns

Daniel Cooper

Daniel Cooper

MCS Public Research Intern, C '21

Ikym Simon

Ikym Simon

MCS Public Research Intern, 2022

Emma Davey

Emma Davey

MCS Public Research Intern, 2022

Rachel Swym

Rachel Swym

MCS Public Research Intern, C'22

Emma Fogel

Emma Fogel

MCS Public Research Intern, C'22

Connor Hardy

Connor Hardy

MCS Public Research Intern, C '21

Tsemone Ogbemi

Tsemone Ogbemi

MCS Public Research Intern, C '21

h

About My Climate Story

Explore the Storybank

Resources

g

Exhibits