Students continue sustainability, textile projects

Hannah Shillo, Associate News Editor

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Students taking an environmental health and sustainability class are currently working on a combined project to both provide a sustainability garden on campus and introduce a textile project.

The group is currently working on hosting a workshop to inform people on how they too can participate in creating and sustaining a healthy environment.

Blake Meadows, senior biological sciences major, is currently taking the class and said the workshop is still being organized.

She said she hopes for the workshop to be scheduled during the first or second week of November.

“In our workshop we’ll be discussing what our project is and how people can take action on campus about it,” Meadows said.

From gardening to recycling, reusing and revamping old clothing, Meadows said there is a lot for people to learn about creating a healthy environment.

“There’s a lot of textile waste that most people don’t know about and so that’s something we are going to try to implement on campus, like how to help save on that stuff and reuse it,” Meadows said. “That one is still in the works, but we do have a garden already.”

Kenya Coleman, senior biological sciences major, is in the same class and said the garden is located near the H. F. Thut Greenhouse on campus.

Meadows said there is also a compost area to pair with the sustainability garden and it is not on campus but rather a distance away from campus.

“With the sustainability garden, there’s composting, and so every week there will be at least one person that goes around the whole campus, and there’s like certain spots,” Meadows said. “The food that gets produced in the garden goes to Klehm, and they make meals out of it.”

Coleman and Meadows, along with their classmates, collect food waste from the dining halls and Java Beanery and Bakery and take the waste to the compost area each week.

Meadows said they take the composted material and use it as a fertilizer for the sustainable garden.

“It can be a lot of work,” Meadows said. “Some people, if they hear about it, might gross them out.”

She said the work the group puts into the composting is sanitary because it is mostly made up of coffee grounds, coffee filters and fruit and vegetable peels.

Coleman said their main goal for the project is to inform Eastern students, staff and faculty of sustainability efforts and encourage them to begin taking part in them.

In order for this project to continue each semester, Coleman said the class will need support from more than just each other.

“This is a community effort,” Coleman said. “We all want to make sure everyone is involved.”

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She said by supporting and taking part in the effort to create a more environmentally friendly and healthy place, the community will also be helping themselves in the long run.

“Our professor says, ‘Think locally; act globally,’ so basically any small contribution can help,” Coleman said. “If we can start here at Eastern, even though we’re a small campus, it’s making some type of an impact for this world with our large carbon footprint.”

As for the textile project, Coleman said it will be produced in the spring.

Hannah Shillo can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].