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SGA sustainability committee partners with composting crew, encourages student involvement

| Friday, September 13, 2019

Saint Mary’s Student Government Association (SGA) works to help the school, and it does its part to help the earth through the sustainability committee. The committee is one of the many that makes up SGA. These committees allow for the allocation of each committee’s passions, planning and budgets.

Senior Kassidy Jungles, co-chair of the sustainability committee, worked with SGA for four years and the committee for three. As a co-chair, Jungles said she helps oversee the committee as well as event planning, fundraising and student outreach.

“Our main goal is to continue working toward ways to make the campus of Saint Mary’s College more sustainable,” Jungles said in an email. “Additionally, we also find ways to educate the students of Saint Mary’s about sustainability and ways that they can be more environmentally conscious — such as knowing what can and cannot be recycled, understanding one’s carbon footprint and even learning about sustainable companies.”

The sustainability committee is responsible for raising a majority of the funds that provide the recycling bins students see around campus. While the committee is run by two of the co-chairs from last year, Jungles said students can expect more events and increased student involvement this year.

“For this year, we hope to connect more with the Saint Mary’s students by hosting more events to raise awareness about sustainability,” Jungles said. “For example, we will be having a yoga event on [Thursday].”

Junior, co-chair Rebecca Cesario also helps run this committee.

“There are many people involved, not only on student government,” Cesario said in an email. “Every student, faculty member and the workers have a part to play on how we are a campus are sustainable. It’s little things, like turning off the water when you are brushing your teeth, taking the extra steps to put something in the recycling bin, turning off lights when you leave a room. The list goes on.”

The sustainability committee also collaborates with the Office for Civic and Social Engagement’s composting crew in their project to compost paper towels used in campus bathrooms.

“We hope to continue with our mission of last year to compost paper towels,” Jungles said. “Currently, with the help of another Saint Mary’s College club, we are just composting paper towels in the bathrooms of the Student Center; however, we hope to expand this to other academic buildings.”

Senior Chiara Smorada, co-commissioner of the composting crew, said she met with the sustainability committee many times last year to build this collaboration.

“Last year the sustainability committee came to the compost crew expressing interest in composting paper towels from the Student Center bathrooms,” Smorada said. “After several meetings to figure out the logistics of composting, Student Government purchased bins for the bathrooms along with compostable bags.”

Cesario said she encourages students to get involved in sustainability efforts on campus, whether on a personal level or by joining the SGA committee.

“If you want to be a student leader, join SGA sustainability, and we will work closely with you in achieving your goals as a person on this campus in making it a better place,” Cesario said.

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