Go Green at W&M

September 11, 2012

New members of the Tribe may have noticed green stickers reminding them to switch off lights, reusable take-out containers in the Caf and Sadler Center, and water-bottle filling stations on campus. They also may recognize this bag and mug:

We certainly tried our best to hand one out to every new student on campus during the orientation period!

New students may have seen these markers of sustainability on campus, but they may not know that they can get directly involved with green efforts at W&M through the Committee on Sustainability.

The Committee on Sustainability is lead by a Steering Committee of faculty, staff, students and administrators, and is made up of three subcommittees. The Science and Technology Advisory Subcommittee studies and manages the College’s ecosystem, and tackles issues like land use, greenhouse gas emissions and stormwater management. The Operations Subcommittee is responsible for developing and recommending a financial and operations plan for promoting sustainability, and includes working groups that deal with recycling and solid waste management and energy on campus. The Program and Education Subcommittee is the education arm of COS, and includes the Food Services and Education and Outreach working groups. These groups are always seeking volunteers. You can learn more about the working groups by visiting the COS website, or by contacting our Sustainability Fellow, Patrick Foley, at pjfoley@email.wm.edu.

COS also runs an internship program for students, the EcoAmbassador Program. Students in this program work closely with a staff or faculty member to develop a sustainability-related research project that will benefit the College. Projects for the Fall of 2012 are united by a theme of communication, with students working to promote Swem Library’s Sustainability Guide, plan Earth Week 2013, present energy data to the campus community, educate the community about recycling, and work on general communication of sustainability efforts. To learn more about the EcoAmbassador program, contact Beth Chambers, the class instructor, at bhcham@wm.edu or Patrick Foley at pjfoley@email.wm.edu.

Students who notice improvements the college could make towards the goal of sustainability can also apply for Green Fee grants. The Green Fee is a fund that goes towards sustainability projects at W&M, and has funded sustainability initiatives ranging from installing refillable water stations to hosting movie screenings and speakers.

Sustainability at William & Mary certainly does not end with COS. In upcoming Hark Upon the Green posts, we’ll talk about opportunities to advocate for the environment through some of our student organizations, as well as introduce students to environmentally-related courses of study at the College.

Stay tuned!

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About:

Welcome to Hark Upon the Green! This blog is a shared space for members of the sustainability community at William & Mary to write about sustainability topics on and beyond. If you would like to contribute to the blog, contact Madeleine Boel, Committee on Sustainability Web Assistant, at mgboel@email.wm.edu.
Make sure to visit Sustainability at W&M for all of W&M's progress on sustainability efforts. Catch up with William & Mary Sustainability on Twitter at WM_GreenisGold
To learn what William & Mary's Environmental Law Society is up to, visit their blog at http://envirols.blogs.wm.edu/.

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