Peter Saudek ’15 transferred to Oberlin and majored in environmental studies with a minor in politics because he wanted to learn about the “impact of human activity on the Earth and to join the growing climate justice movement,” he says.
After graduation, passion led the Lexington, Massachusetts, native to Cleveland and the Housing Research & Advocacy Center. Saudek says he chose to work with the organization because of its advocacy work around civil rights and social justice. He also volunteers for Environmental Health Watch, a local environmental justice organization, where he is co-organizing the Race, Food & Justice Conference 2016 in collaboration with the Social Justice Institute and Rid-All Green Partnership. The event brings together communities from around the Midwest to analyze the urban food movement through a social justice lens and create more equitable solutions to food deserts and disenfranchising policies.
Saudek says he particularly enjoys the people he works with. “One of the most rewarding parts of the work I do is having the opportunity to learn from, and connect with, people from all over who are working collectively to improve the standard of living for individuals and communities across Northeast Ohio,” he says.
When he isn’t working toward housing equality, Saudek spends his spare time fostering puppies and coaching a youth basketball team. He also volunteers for the ACLU working with incarcerated people who are preparing for re-entry. He says he plans to stay in Cleveland for the foreseeable future and work against housing discrimination and mass incarceration. “I’m thinking about a master’s in social work or pursuing law down the road,” he says, “but for now, I really appreciate learning outside of the classroom.”