Student Sessions #2

Sunday, September 15
10:00 am - 11:15 am

An Introduction to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and Environmental Planning

Lead: SWCA

This session is intended to provide a brief background and overview of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) State Guidelines and fundamentals of related environmental planning. This session will feature a presentation developed specifically for people interested or involved in the environmental review process, including consultants, regulators, applicants, or industry professionals, and will benefit those new to the field as well as serve as a ?refresher? for mid-level practicing professionals. The panel of presenters will include private environmental consultants, as well as a local agency representative, to provide a range of perspectives when discussing the basics of the environmental review process. The session will include a presentation on the basics of CEQA with a focus on real-world project examples to illustrate key considerations and decisions throughout the process. The panel will seek to engage the audience in a group discussion to come to consensus on the questions presented. The session will conclude with an interactive discussion/workshop focused on the CEQA Guidelines Appendix G Checklist. The workshop portion of the session will allow the audience to break into smaller groups and work through the steps of the environmental review process for a hypothetical project. This process will include identifying the appropriate level of environmental review, identification of anticipated key environmental issues, and a discussion of likely impacts based on the thresholds identified in the CEQA Guidelines Appendix G Checklist. After working through the process as one large group or in smaller breakout groups (depending on time), we will discuss the hypothetical project and environmental review process together and conclude with questions and answers.

Interviewing 101: Put Your Best Foot Forward

Lead: California Planning Foundation (CPF)

It's natural to feel nervous at an interview. The best way to alleviate your anxiety and come across as confident and knowledgeable is to prepare ahead of time and practice, practice, practice! The session will begin with a presentation from the panelists to provide all attendees with an overview of effective techniques on how to prepare for an interview.  The second portion of the session will include breakout groups that will dive into key takeaways.  More specifically, students will walk away with an understanding of how to communicate effectively, answer challenging questions, and make their pitch during the interview setting.