Eco-friendly efforts ‘headed in right direction’ on campus
Seton Hall University has joined the “go green” movement by reducing its printing, planting an organic garden and serving “free-range” meat in the Caf, among other initiatives.
According to Marian Glenn, Ph.D., who served on a digital sustainability committee last spring, there is still room for improvement.
“We have a sustainability officer at SHU, John Signorello,” Glenn said. “He is currently working on the idea of getting solar panels.”
The president and founder of My Local Garden, the organic garden at Seton Hall, Wanda Knapik, said that the University is “absolutely headed in the right direction” with the garden.
“Seton Hall is creating students who are more aware of the environment,” Knapik said. “The purpose of education in the garden was to put students on the path of thinking about the environment.”
To continue their efforts, the University will be the first university in New Jersey to offer a Permaculture Design Certificate Course. Permaculture Design is a way of living without affecting others or destroying the environment, according to the class description.
While Seton Hall has been taking steps to curb several environmental offenses, according to Glenn, commuting is the biggest “carbon footprint” for the University.
“The next project should be to study successful carpooling programs and see how they made it work,” Glenn said.
Ecology Club President, Courtney Dobbertin said that while Seton Hall is becoming more eco-friendly, there is still more upon which the University can improve.
“I feel that SHU could do better at diminishing our waste consumption,” Dobbertin said.
According to Dobbertin, serving “free-range” meat in the caf and reducing printing are good initiatives but people need to be better educated.
“Unless people are informed as to the ‘before’ and ‘after’ effect and become educated as to why these initiatives are important, then people will either not know this is happening or not care,” Dobbertin said.
Dobbertin stressed the importance of rewarding students for their environmental efforts such as giving discounts to people who bring their own bags to the bookstore in order to keep students interested.
Glenn said she is pleased with the number of environmental studies students that are being educated at the University.
“We really have a large number of environmental studies majors,” Glenn said. “I think students are concerned with being environmentally friendly.”
Dobbertin said she hopes students continue to become more environmentally aware.
“We all live on this Earth, and we all need to contribute in our own way to make it a better place,” Dobbertin said.
Signorello, campus sustainability officer, and the vice president of Gourmet Dining Services, Anthony Frungillo, did not return request for comment by press time.
Ashley Duvall can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. edu.