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FLEFF Intern Voices

The Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival from the interns' point of view

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Posted by Meagan McGinnes at 11:35AM   |  7 comments
Meagan McGinnes, Ithaca College 2014

Meagan McGinnes

Class of 2014, Journalism

Minors in politics and environmental studies

Norwood, MA


Fun Facts About Me:

1.     I am a Boston girl.

2.     I have a twin sister, who also goes to Ithaca College.

3.     I am addicted to caffeine.

4.     My favorite color is yellow.

5.     I have Bieber fever, and I am not afraid to show it!


Don’t laugh. I am 100 percent serious when I say that Leonardo DiCaprio helped me discover my passion for environmental activism. My ridiculous love for DiCaprio began with the release of the movie Titanic. While casually stalking him/scrolling through his website, I stumbled upon his eco-link. I was enlightened. I was shocked. I was hooked.

Since then, I have become dedicated to environmental advocacy and the promotion of sustainable lifestyles through my love of journalism (check out my blog from the Ithacan!). I am President of Ithaca College’s chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. I am also Co-Editor for the upfront section of Buzzsaw Magazine. I love to talk and meet new people, but even more so I love to write. Sometimes, I have a hard time articulating exactly what I am feeling, but through my writing I am able to take the time to say exactly what I want to say, how I want to say it. And trust me, I have a lot to say. Words are beautiful. However, beauty is in the eye of the beholder and now it is time for me to look for beauty elsewhere.

I am so pleased to be working with FLEFF so I can explore a medium of journalism outside of my comfort zone, while still advocating for something I love: the planet. I am captivated by this art form that uses visuals to stir action, and I can’t wait to learn more. But even more so, I am thrilled to be a part of the community created around this festival. Which is what the theme of microtopias is all about: building an ideal community on a local level to explore the world without constraints. We create boundaries and limits for ourselves all of the time.  My resolution at the beginning of this New Year was to live my life by the words of Neale Donald Walsch who said, “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” I believe this statement is true for the environmental movement as well. By breaking through these zones we create for ourselves, only then can we challenge existing systems, mindsets, boundaries and limits.

So here is what I want to know from you: other than participating in FLEFF 2012, what will you be doing to advocate for the environment in your own daily life? What will you do to break out of your comfort zone? How will you work to make your own utopia a reality rather than an ideal?



We're both from Boston! And we share the caffeine addiction in common, which is sad, because I don't even like coffee... (I just use the energy.)

And good question at the end! I know it's small, but I'm trying to learn more about composting (what is compostable, what isn't, etc...) and how I can compost more. Yay sustainability!

Great first post, Meagan!

First off let me say I was quite shocked to hear Leo Dicaprio was your environmentalist inspiration - well done! I already admired him as an actor, and now I respect him even more. Any chance you could link us to the eco-link you mentioned?

I love the question you posed - created little utopias in your own world. I myself have found that, since joining FLEFF, I have already been more conscious of how I recycle, even in my own dorm room! I now walk proudly down to the dumpsters each week with a bag for garbage, bag for bottle recycles, bag for paper recycles... etc. Every little bit counts.

Glad you guys liked the first post! Sarah, here is the link to Leo's site.

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