Student’s Corner

Have you ever wondered what opportunities there are to become “greener” on campus? Being new to campus as a freshman, and new to Team Green, I wanted to do some internet exploring to find out all the opportunities that River Campus students have to become more involved in not only living green, but promoting a sustainable lifestyle. There are lots of student organizations on campus with green and sustainable missions, not limited to the ones listed below. Students can get involved with these groups directly, and can also attend the events that the different groups plan.

Grassroots is an environmental action and awareness group working to promote sustainable practices and behavior on campus. The group is involved in events both on and off-campus, and plan ongoing activities such as their monthly Clothing Exchange and annual Earth Day celebration.

Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW) promotes sustainability on campus with a combination of projects led by students, tours of local sustainable facilities, and participation in green awareness events. An example of an ESW project is the bicycle-powered smoothie maker that they created. ESW is open to students of all majors, not just engineers!

Student Association of Vegan and Vegetarian Youth (SAVVY) brings both awareness and support to vegan and vegetarian lifestyles, and hopes to provide students with information on how dietary choices affect themselves and the environment. SAVVY works with Dining Services to increase the availability of vegan and vegetarian food on campus, makes trips to restaurants, holds vegetarian potlucks, and is involved in educational events.

EcoReps are a group of 30 freshmen living and working in freshmen residential buildings with the mission of creating environmentally literate students. They engage students on their halls in environmentally minded hall programs, and educate students about environmental issues.

GreenSpace is special interest housing designed for students interested in living a sustainable lifestyle. GreenSpace is a place for like-minded students sharing the goal of leading environmentally conscious lives to come together to share their passion, learn from each other, and promote sustainability on the Rochester campus. The GreenSpace floor is located on the first floor of Burton, and is open to non-residents as well.

The Student Sustainability Council works with the goal of promoting open dialogue between the different student sustainability organizations on campus (like the ones described above). The Council provides an opportunity for students interested in sustainability to connect with each other, and hopes to make the University of Rochester’s campus more sustainable. The council includes

  • SA Sustainability Coordinator
  • Facilities’ Recycling Coordinator
  • Co-president of Grassroots
  • President of Engineers for a Sustainable World
  • Dining Services Sustainability Manager
  • Student representative from the University Council on Sustainability
  • Member of Net Impact Club from the Simon School
  • Members of the Recycling and Sustainability Committee under the SA’s Projects and Services Committee

In addition to the student groups listed above, there are also multiple internship opportunities available to students at the University.

Facilities Team Green (FTG), the team I’m a part of, is a group of student staff for Facilities and Services who work under the University’s Recycling Coordinator, Amy Kadrie. FTG is dedicated to increasing education and awareness of sustainability on the University of Rochester campus, and is involved with many events throughout the year, including Recyclemania, which is occurring right now!

Dining Team Green is composed of a staff of student interns who promote sustainability in Dining Services, and also serve as a liaison between Dining Services and the student body. Dining Team Green has many ongoing programs, such as the Eco-Clamshells, Meatless Mondays, the food labeling system, and the promotion of reusable mugs and bags across campus.

More sustainability related internships can be found here.

With so many sustainability-minded groups on campus, it’s not difficult to promote sustainable living yourself. Try clicking on the links of the different groups to find out more about them and to learn how to get involved.

Written by Ciara McGillivray, Class of 2018