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United Nations Academic Impact and MCN are proud to partner on the Millennium Fellowship. In the three months the application was open in 2018, students applied to join the Class of 2018 on 285 campuses across 57 nations. 30 campuses worldwide (just 11%) were selected to host the 402 Millennium Fellows in the global pilot this year.

The Class of 2018 is bold, innovative, and inclusive. During the Millennium Fellowship, Millennium Fellows' dedicated 48,785 hours and their 214 unique projects positively impacted the lives of 393,449 people worldwide.



University of Pennsylvania | Pennsylvania, United States | Advancing SDG 11 & UNAI 9


" I never thought that as an undergraduate I could be investigating an issue that is of growing importance to New York City and cities around the globe. That is why I am excited to be a Millennium Fellow. The fellowship provides world changers a setting to openly discuss issues, share advice, and most importantly remind each other that we are not alone in our commitment to improve our communities. "

Millennium Fellowship Project: Investigating the Extent of which Green Infrastructure Reduces Local Surface Temperature

Worldwide, many cities are trying to mitigate the urban heat island (UHI) effect for the welfare of its residents. The UHI phenomenon occurs when urban areas experience an increase in temperature due to excessive impervious surfaces that absorb incoming solar radiation. The infrastructure difference between urban and surrounding non-urban areas creates a sensible temperature disparity (Imhoff, et al 2010). With the onset of climate change increasing average temperatures, the UHI effect is only set to intensify. Fortunately, universities located within cities are addressing this issue, as well as the other challenges posed by climate change, by implementing green infrastructure.

In particular, the University of Pennsylvania has solidified its commitment to building climate resilience through an extensive green infrastructure program. According to Penn’s 2013 Stormwater Master Plan, the university’s primary goal is to use green infrastructure to alleviate excess runoff into the Schuylkill River (Duffield Associates LRSLA Studio, Inc., 2013). However, embedded in each green infrastructure project is a series of co-benefits including thermal reduction.

This project aims to investigate the extent to which Penn Park, the university’s largest green infrastructure project, decreases surface temperature within its local vicinity. Penn Park serves as an athlete training ground and public recreational space, so it would be beneficial to assess how this space provides thermal comfort to its much active occupants. Knowledge of Penn Park’s ability to effect temperature could provide multiple benefits including granting a better understanding of the university’s green infrastructure investment, helping the university consider green infrastructure for the purpose of thermal reduction, and serving as a precedent for other universities.

To investigate Penn Park's effect on local temperature, I am using remotely sensed satellite data to detect changes in the area's average surface temperature before and after installation. In addition, I am using this data to detect changes in surface temperature as one moves away from the Park and towards Philadelphia's urban Center and Upenn's Campus.

About the Millennium Fellow

Hello! My name is Ejirooghene Ojeni, and I am an avid youtube-choreography watcher, chocolate enthusiast, and a proud New Yorker. I am passionate about exploring urban environments, which manifests itself in me taking impromptu strolls or long runs across any city l’m in. The concept of eco-cities fascinates me, which is why I love observing how a city incorporates sustainability in both its public and private spaces. Ultimately, I aspire to become a sustainable urban planner and my first plan of action would be to transform my hometown, The Bronx, into a beautiful eco-city.

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