Alumni Profile: Sarah Finnie Robinson '78

Sarah Finnie Robinson '78
Posted on November 7, 2014

Major:

English

Professional role and organization:

Founding Partner, WeSpire

How do you define sustainability?

Generously. Sustainability encompasses the familiar and critical issues of energy, water waste, and environmental health. In my view sustainability also includes corporate responsibility, safety, diversity and inclusion, social justice, best business practices and performance. Because the opposite of sustainability is an abject, flaccid, impoverished vacuum.

How does your work relate to sustainability and how did Princeton prepare you for your role?

WeSpire is a technology startup company that provides engagement platforms for positive behavior change. Large global corporations use this to get people excited about participating and innovating. Partner organizations use our digital products to boost offline enthusiasm and drive measurable results on the initiatives most important to the companies -- and to the people who work there. It's a win-win-win: people are proud of their employers, employers hit goals and enjoy positive impacts. Consumers, customers, investors, suppliers, and other stakeholders want to be involved too.

My experience co-founding Generation magazine was most helpful and relevant to my work today.

What advice would you offer to students seeking to focus on or incorporate sustainability in their careers?

I'd suggest identifying organizations, mentors, products, and companies that get you fired up about sustainability. Then hook into those orgs and build relationships with the people who are involved. Figure out what approach gets you excited, and then go get some experience. Even an unpaid internship can be a life changer.