Sari Ohsada
MSc in Environmental Change and Management
University of Oxford (Rotary Club of Canmore and Rotary Club of Faringdon and District), 2020-21
Sari Ohsada is passionate about exploring environmental justice issues in diverse geographies and understanding the challenges and opportunities for societies to pursue just or fair transitions. Just Transition is a broad concept concerned with how transitions to a low carbon economy are inclusive, recognizing the different burdens and benefits that individuals and societies face.
Sari was awarded a Rotary Global Grant Scholarship in 2020 to undertake her MSc degree in Environmental Change and Management at the University of Oxford. There, she researched on Just Transition framings around Alberta’s thermal coal phase-out and its implications for equity and justice. Following her year, Sari received Distinction on her paper and presented her personal reflections at the 2022 Rotary District 5360 Conference in Cochrane (link). She donated the speaker honorarium back to ShelterBox, a humanitarian aid charity providing emergency shelter and supplies to thousands of families worldwide following the disaster.
Growing up in an immigrant family in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, Sari’s journey with Rotary International began when she was a Rotary Youth Exchange student in France (2012-13). Living abroad for the first time, she developed a passion for cross-cultural understanding and global sustainability.
Sari graduated from Queen’s University, Canada, with a BSc (Honours) degree in Environmental Science and Global Development Studies, focusing her undergraduate thesis on Sustainable Agricultural Narratives and Policy in Ontario. Given her passion for meeting various people with different perspectives, she took part in many student-led organizations on campus, including Queen’s Rotaract Club, Queen’s Backing Action on Climate Change, Queen’s Engineers Without Borders, Queen’s International Affairs Association, Queen’s Japanese Program, and Queen’s Karate Club. Sari was also awarded a Killam Fellowship (Fulbright Canada), which enabled her to study abroad for a semester at Arizona State University.
Sari has worked for various organizations, including Environment and Climate Change Canada and Parks Canada in Banff National Park. Additionally, Sari has extensive experience researching abroad, such as her work with the United Nations Development Programme in Kosovo. Currently, she works as a Sustainability Intern at ARC Resources in Calgary and volunteers as a coach for the Special Olympics Calgary Rhythmic Gymnastics group. She also serves as an elected University Councillor (2020-24) for Queen’s University, intending to contribute to ongoing efforts on diversity and inclusion.
To connect with Sari, visit her LinkedIn page.