Rabb Graduate Center, 347
DegreesCornell University, J.D.
Yale University, B.A.
ExpertiseEnvironmental Justice, Environmental Law and Policy, Environmental Sustainability
ProfileLaura Goldin is Professor of the Practice at Brandeis University, Associate Director of the Environmental Studies Program, Director of the Environmental Internship Program and an award-winning teacher. Her courses and programs have helped lead the way in developing hands-on experiential learning that engages students directly in tackling current challenges in meaningful and sustaining collaborations with community partners. Her students have worked with local non-profits and tenants to reduce lead exposures in low income housing, assess toxic exposures to immigrant nail salon workers, create community gardens with public housing residents and educational public school gardens with K-12 children and teachers, and engaged with students in other projects and research to promote environmental health, access to healthy food and open space and community sustainability and social justice. In Goldin’s “Greening the Ivory Tower” course, students design and implement sustainability projects that create long-term improvement to the campus and community environment http://www.brandeis.edu/programs/environmental/undergrad/greeningcourse/index.html
Laura Goldin also offers the immersive Environmental Health and Justice “Justice Brandeis Semester”, a hands-on, multi-disciplinary, community-engaged learning program. http://www.brandeis.edu/jbs/pastprograms/f2011/index.html
In this program, a small group of students delve deeply involved into the law, policy, social impacts and science of current environmental health issues challenging individuals, families and communities today. They work directly with communities most vulnerable and affected, from low-income immigrant neighborhoods of urban Boston and Waltham to rural mountain mining townships of Kentucky suffering the effects of mountaintop removal for coal extraction. The students also conduct an environmental health study of major environmental justice concern. The fall 2011 study, assessing occupational chemical exposure to primarily Vietnamese immigrant women nail salon workers, was presented at the Academy of Sciences International Conference on Environmental Science and Technology in 2012 and published http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10903-013-9856-y. The follow-on study by the fall 2013 Environmental Health and Justice students was presented at both the 2014 Academy of Sciences International Conference on Environmental Science and Technology and the American Industrial Hygiene Conference & Exposition.
Goldin also established with her students in 2007 the Brandeis/WATCH Housing Advocacy Clinic, a free, twice weekly drop-in service for the low income and immigrant community in the local area. The Clinic assists tenants with poor living conditions typical to high-risk low-income housing such as toxic exposure to lead, asbestos and mold, helps prevent evictions and homelessness, and helps individuals and families deal with issues of discrimination and harassment. It also provides the first critical point of contact for referral to other needed services, from food and fuel assistance to medical care and job training. The Clinic has been in continuous operation with Goldin and her students for nearly nine years, with over 350 trained students assisting well over 1400 individuals and families. http://www.brandeis.edu/programs/environmental/undergrad/clinic.html
Ms. Goldin came to Brandeis with more than 20 years’ experience as an environmental attorney in government, industry, public interest, and private law practice. Her work has addressed a broad spectrum of environmental issues, from hazardous waste and air and water pollution to occupational health and safety, toxic exposure, and land use regulation. She has argued precedent-setting environmental case law, and has helped to craft a number of emerging environmental protection laws and regulations. She continues to consult pro bono on a number of environmental justice, wetlands protection, land preservation and other matters. Prior to Brandeis, Laura served as General Counsel for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, where she was the chief environmental lawyer for the state agency and managed an office of 50 attorneys and administrative law judges. She received her B.A. from Yale University, and her J.D. from Cornell and Harvard Law Schools.
|AMST||102aj||Environment, Social Justice, and Empowerment|
|AMST||191b||Greening the Ivory Tower: Improving Environmental Sustainability of Brandeis and Community|
|EL||94a||Experiential Learning Practicum|
|ENVS||102aj||Field Research and Study Methods: Environmental Health|
|FYS||43b||Visions of the American Environment, Images to Action|
Awards and Honors
Louis Dembitz Brandeis Prize for Excellence in Teaching (2014)
Mandel Humanities Center Grant for Collaborative Interdisciplinary Teaching (2014)
Massachusetts Service and Volunteerism Award, Higher-Education Community Service Champion, Honorable Mention (2013)
Senior Class 1st Annual Teacher Award: "Most Supportive Professor" (2011)
Sustainable Community Commitment Award (2010)
Champions of Sustainability in Communities Award (2009)
Crossroads Community Foundation Woolsey Conover Award (2009)
Community Award, Waltham Alliance to Create Housing (WATCH) (2007)
Davis Community Engaged Learning Fellow (2006)
Davis Experiential Learning Fellow (2006)
Goldin, Laura J. Occupational Exposure to Chemicals in Nail Salons. Proc. of American Academy of Sciences Seventh International Conference on Environmental Science and Technology. Houston, Texas: Conference Proceedings, Abstract, 2014. (forthcoming)
Goldin, Laura J. "Indoor Air Quality Survey of Nail Salons in Boston." Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health June 2013. June 2013 (2013): <http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10903-013-9856-y#>.
Goldin, Laura J. "WATCH Housing Advocacy Clinic: Serving Community Needs." Civic Engagement Nov/Dec 2011 (2012): pg. 22.
Goldin, Laura J. Air Quality Survey of Boston Nail Salons. Proc. of Academy of Sciences 2012 International Conference of Environmental Science and Technology. Houston Texas: Academy of Sciences, 2012.