By Mackenzie Farkus
The Simmons Sustainability Club held a “Trash Demonstration” on Monday demanding the College to implement a Sustainability Action Plan in the near future.
Sustainability Club wanted students, faculty, and staff to visualize the amount of plastic waste visitors of the Fens generate each day during lunch hours. The Club’s “Letter to Deans,” which was signed by Co-Presidents Maddie Karod and Gabby Lawlinger, Outreach Coordinator Charlotte Rivard, and multiple members of the Sustainability Club, requested support from various deans from around the College for the “Trash Demo.”
The “Letter to Deans” emphasized the importance of reusable food containers and biodegradable alternatives, and advocated for Simmons administration and Dining Services to make the switch from plastic to reuasble or biodegradable containers.
“We are determined to show the administration and Dining Services why reusable containers are not just an option, but a necessity if we wish to make Simmons College a sustainable campus,” the “Letter to Deans” states. “This demonstration will not only send a message to administration but to students to inspire change on an individual level; to remind students that a small group of people can make a difference.”
Sustainability Club members wearing green stood by trash cans in the Fens in order to collect plastic waste generated by students. After filling up trash bags with waste from 11 a.m. to approximately 2:30 p.m., students sealed the bags and placed them in a pile outside on the Fens patio. Students, faculty, and staff also had the opportunity to sign a petition to call on the College to create a Sustainability Action Plan.
Members of the Simmons Sustainability Club cited other colleges and universities’ efforts to create more sustainable campuses. Club leaders pointed out the sustainability initiatives crafted by students, faculty, and staff from the University of Vermont, Boston University, Wheelock College, Wellesley College, and the Massachusetts College of Art and Design (MassArt) in their “Letter to Deans.”
The aforementioned universities and colleges have created numerous sustainability initiatives, such as offices focused on campus sustainability, sustainability representative positions for students, recycling and compost centers, as well as sustainability fairs that celebrate eco-friendly matters like supporting local food and “upcycling” products that can be turned into different objects.
Students, faculty, and staff can reach out to the Simmons Sustainability Club with any questions, comments, or concerns via their email SustainOurSimmons@Simmons.edu.