Thursday, January 17, 2008

Student bloggers

What a Crew!
Students working on our NRG windpower assessment tower
Photo by Clayton

The Sustainability Activities Blog has been "syndicated" on our local newspaper site and its link has been emailed to a lot of influential people in Maine, regional and national sustainability circles. It's also been a focus of interest to incoming students. Finally, we discover how to get the news out about Unity College sustainability activities and programs, "virally."

It easy for other colleges and universities to get attention. They have contacts and financial pull that we just don't have, and we certainly wouldn't spend our student's tuition dollars just to get attention when we could spend it on new green buildings, or retrofitting old buildings. But the competition has been fierce, and at times ludicrous. Other colleges and universities have gotten national attention for the most ridiculous greenwash.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: if you know of, or attend, a college that has less than our current actual climate emissions of 1.86 metric tonnes per student per year, we want to know about it.

Virally, however, Unity College can become recognized, because what we do may be frugal and simple, but it is very real, and we show how just about anyone can do it. The CEE Online site, where K-12 schools are encouraged to green their campuses, is a great addition. (See link to left, below the CEE Banner.) Our students who want to work in this field realize this, and they contribute a lot of the thinking, ideas, and almost all of the exuberance and energy to these efforts.

I want our efforts to get this recognition because I want our students to succeed. Any of the folks who have helped out in this effort can go away after graduation and do much the same for you institution. That goes for our current grads in degrees like ecology, environmental policy, and environmental analysis, but our new grads, in a few year's time, in the two new programs, will be directly trained to take charge of institutions and reduce energy costs and climate emissions, or to start local food systems programs.

Three of these budding experts have now officially joined the contributor team, Sara, Jake, and Clayton. You've seen their activities already, but now they want to post in their own right, and you'll see their stuff come up from time to time. I won't say welcome, because they've really been here all along, but I'm glad to have them posting directly. I couldn't ask for any better indication of the success of the work we do, and of their own competence.

If other students also want to post, just come see me.

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