Sustainability: Marist Red Foxes Take Action

One of the things that Marist College does very well is looking for many different ways to be a more sustainable and environmentally aware campus. Earlier this school year, I was appointed to the open Resident Senator position in the Student Government Association and came in with the idea of leading a Sustainability Committee. I wanted to do this to be able to further efforts for a greener campus. Sustainability is becoming a concern for this generation and many students are looking for ways they can help, on both a small scale, such as in their residence hall, or on a larger scale, such as in the town of Poughkeepsie or their hometown. While at Marist, students, as well as faculty and staff, have the opportunity to learn and practice effective sustainability techniques. These practices can be brought back to their hometowns or places they visit, and soon can turn into lifestyle routines and habits.

Walking around campus, there are many signs that Marist students and staff are doing what they can to promote a “greener” lifestyle. There are big black bins that are divided into three sections: trash, bottles and cans, and paper. Recycling is an important part of Marist College life. Residents have access to recycling areas in their areas, especially freshmen. Even before freshman year, at Orientation and Welcome Week, students are taught and encouraged to recycle during their time here. Also at Marist, there are a lot of sustainable efforts going on behind the scenes that students do not really know about. The Marist Dining Hall is taking incredible strides for sustainability. They offer local and regional food, especially in the weekly Valley Café, they provide sustainable paper products and napkins, and they compost all food waste. Since the beginning of the program in 2007, the dining hall has composted more than one million pounds of food waste. Also, Marist College was awarded first place for the second year in a row as the Organics Reduction Champion of the WasteWise program, the Game Day Challenge.

Students today have a big responsibility on their hands: to continue practicing sustainable ways of living and to search for more ways to make the planet healthy. One way students can contribute is by attending the annual Sustainability Day on March 29, 2012 in the Student Center. There will be guest speakers, films, presentations, tours, and much more from which students, faculty, and staff can learn more about how to be environmentally aware on this campus, and in their home. Be sure to look for more information about this event soon. If you are interested in joining the Sustainability Committee, please email me at

There’s a way that Marist Red Foxes can show Christmas colors all year long: red and green go perfectly together! Go Red Foxes and Go Green!

Courtney Lawlor ‘15
Student Government Association- Resident Senator
Follow me on Twitter  @ce_lawl
Follow SGA Sustainability  @SGAGreen

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