Who are you? Give us some highlights from your past
My name is Jack, and I will be working as a Sustainability Intern this summer! I am currently a student at Lewis & Clark College here in Portland, but I originally hail from the east coast from Vermont and New Jersey. As a kid, I attended an outdoor summer camp which included a wide variety of outdoor trips, ending in a canoeing trip that lasted for 35 days. Despite having experience on the water, my interests have always been on the ground in hiking and backpacking, which lead me to later completing the Long Trail on my own. I’ve always felt at home in the forest, which has guided me towards studying Environmental Studies and Earth System Sciences at school.
Tell us about a very memorable trip outdoors from the last few years:
Most recently, I finished the Long Trail as a solo hiker, which is a 273-mile trail reaching from the southern to northern border of Vermont. It was tough to find time to hike it between working in the summer and being in school during the other months, but I had an absolute blast doing it and I’m so glad I did. In the south it coincides with the AT, and then gets a little more sketchy as you reach areas further north. I love Vermont trails (especially high up on the ridgeline), it covered all of the major peaks in the state, and I was able to meet a bunch of cool people on the trail. I learned a lot about self-reliance and my abilities to push myself even at times I didn’t think I could.
What do you do at CNOC?
The majority of my projects for the summer lie in making Cnoc an even better B Corporation and reducing its overall carbon footprint. This includes identifying areas where Cnoc can improve their sustainability in the first place, and then afterwards implementing solutions based on the information I find. Related to that, I am also creating Life Cycle Analyses for the products we manufacture specifically as part of Cnoc. Creating these will allow the company to better understand the environmental cost of the products we create and then share that information with you!
While I’m working on these individual projects, I’ll also be making the rounds through each of our different departments, learning how they work and acquiring the skills to help out the other staff here at Cnoc. By the end of the summer, I’ll be able to help out in logistics, fabrication, marketing, and more!
What is a running project you are working on at the moment that no one knows about yet?
I don’t want to give away too many secrets, but something I’m excited about is creating an emissions breakdown for each of our Cnoc products on their page in the website. Reading a multi-page LCA report is likely not the most interesting read for most people, but presenting an emissions breakdown is a great way to improve our transparency with you all!
What is your favorite kit that we make?
You can’t seem to go wrong with the solo backpacker kit - it’s got a Vecto, Vesica, and filter which covers all of the hydration needs I’m looking for on the trail. As someone who has struggled with Sawyer Squeeze bags and Smart Water bottles in the past, they’re such an easier way to filter your water. I’ve found that the Vesica with a Sport Cap is quickly becoming my go-to water bottle just because it’s so easy to grab and use throughout the day.
I also love the look and feel of the cork grips on the Diorite Poles. While EVA is sometimes the smarter choice from a utility perspective, something about the cork just makes me happy.
What’s an interesting (or not-so-interesting) non-CNOC factoid about yourself that is important to who you are as a person?
I’m working on creating an array of terrariums using a bunch of old test tubes and bottles that I have collected. I’ve been collecting materials to create aquatic terrariums as well as the normal kind.