Attainable Sustainable is Saint Joseph's program to promote environmental practices and instill a stewardship ethic on campus.
In 2007, Dr. Jeanne Gulnick, an
environmental sciences professor, became the campus's first sustainability coordinator
and started to recruit student Eco-Reps, analyze the College's energy use,
and increase recycling efforts, among other initiatives. Now there are Eco-Reps in each residence hall who help educate students about environmental ethics and actions.
involves living in such a way that the needs of all people on this planet can
be met – without compromising the ability of future generations to enjoy these same privileges. It means using resources responsibly, minimizing pollution, and
caring for the ecosystems that support us and the millions of other species who
call Earth home.
sustainability fit in at Saint Joseph's College?
sustainably is directly in keeping with our College's mission statement and our core values. Sustainability is also increasingly important to the Catholic
Church and the Sisters of
What are we
doing to become more sustainable on campus?
In October 2012, President
James Dlugos signed the American College and University Presidents Climate
Commitment. This provides a framework
and sets benchmarks for our campus reaching carbon neutrality. Carbon
neutrality refers to no net greenhouse gas emissions achieved through
minimizing emissions, increasing renewable energy sources, and using
carbon offsets or other means to mitigate emissions. The commitment
involves developing a comprehensive plan and mechanism to guide it,
completing a greenhouse gas inventory, and initiating some corrective
actions even before the final plan is developed.
- We require all students to
take Ecology and Environmental Challenge, a four-credit course that
focuses on sustainability issues and gives students the tools and
awareness necessary to be better global citizens.
- "Take Back the Tap" is an educational
initiative on campus that promotes using refillable containers for drinks in place of bottled water (to use less of the petroleum-based
- Single-stream recycling bins are installed on campus and each student's room comes equipped with recycling bins.
- Mercy Hall renovations are being planned with a green design in mind that meets LEED standards.
- Composting is utilized by Dining Services, with the resulting food waste given to neighboring farms or used at Pearson's Town Farm as a way to support local agriculture.
- The College's dining experience is tray-less to discourage wasted food (students now take only what they can eat).
- The Green Move Out program promotes
recycling when students move out of the dorms each May.
- Cleaning on campus is done with the use of green cleaning
The Dorr Foundation Grant
Foundation has awarded Saint Joseph's a $23,550 grant to help monitor energy
use more closely on campus, and also partner with students in a nearby
community to monitor, calculate and reduce energy use at their school and
homes. Former sustainability coordinator Jeanne Gulnick
will train five seventh-grade math and science teachers at Windham Middle
School about how to install meters that measure energy use in classrooms and in
their students' homes. The grant will also connect the math and science
students at the middle school with Saint Joseph's mentors – student Eco-Reps
and students enrolled in the Ecology and the Environmental Challenge course on
campus. In all, roughly 225 middle school students and 270 Saint Joseph's
students will be involved.