Sophomores work to make QU eco friendly

By on October 31, 2007

When Sophomore Class President Jen Walts learned that Quinnipiac was one of the least environmentally green campuses in Connecticut, she felt she had to change that.

Walts began developing a new GoGreen program for Quinnipiac. The program, which is already entrenched at schools such as Fairfield, Yale and Sacred Heart, involves a series of policies to help bring Quinnipiac up to date environmentally.

This past month, students received a recycling survey from the Student Government via e-mail.

According to the results, 89 percent of students said that they recycled at home. Additionally, only 46 percent said they recycle at school.

The survey also found that 84 percent of students would recycle if more bins were placed around campus.

“I definitely would recycle more if there were more bins,” said sophomore, Ethan Donnovan.

Although the SGA began making strides toward an environmentally friendly campus, the Quinnipiac administration will have to approve any plans the SGA has.

Cooperation from the facilities department, which is in charge of waste disposal on campus, is perhaps the most important thing.

“It is a question of whether or not the facilities department recycles,” sophomore class Vice President, Caitlin Dowley said.

Facilities has officially stated that they do recycle rather than simply throwing the recycling bins out with the trash.

However, Dowley and Walts stated that they have never seen recycling trucks on campus.

Dowley also added that it is not part of facilities job to make sure that students are not throwing trash into the recycling bins.

She also suggested the possibility of a work study program for students to travel around campus and empty the recycling bins.

“We wanted to work with the administration first,” Dowley said.

A few groups, both on and off campus, have stepped up and taken initiative. Roots and Shoots, an environmental organization on campus, has contributed goals and initiatives to the GoGreen campaign. They have promoted environmental responsibility on campus.

Sleeping Giant PR, an organization based in nearby Sleeping Giant State Park, has also helped promote environmental issues.

At last week’s SGA meeting, President Lahey addressed the environmental issues.

He talked about how he had discussed recycling with facilities, and how they agreed to comply with regulations.

He also stated that the new York Hill campus will be “an entirely green campus.”

Lahey hopes to take advantage of the high altitude to incorporate wind power.

SGA has received a great deal of support from Dean of Students, Manny Carreiro. Carreiro focused on improving the situation on campus.

SGA has plans for the program beyond just recycling. “Eventually, we want to work on energy conservation,” Dowley said.

SGA wants to establish subcommittees to tackle different aspects of environmental protection. They also plan to start an Environmental Steering Committee to help keep the GoGreen program on track.

Both Dowley and Walts agree that the program will not develop overnight. “This isn’t something that is going to happen in the next couple of months,” Walts said. “It will be a couple of years.”

Fifty-three percent of students who took the survey felt that Quinnipiac has an environmentally friendly campus. Walts and Dowley feel that this shows how little many students know about the environmental situation at Quinnipiac.

However, Walts and Dowley feel that just starting a change is their goal for now.

“If we can start a change on campus,” Dowley said, “That’s what is important.”


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