Welcome back Loggers, we hope the break was restful for everyone!
This semester, ASUPS and SAC are partnering to officially launch the green fee! As many people may know, this is the first year our campus has had a green fee, a fund that is comprised of 3 dollars from every student’s fees, which adds up to more than 7,000 dollars! Last semester, headed by the ASUPS Director of Sustainability, Kirsten Fahlbusch, we collected applications for those students or student groups interested in using a portion of that money for a sustainability related project that benefits the student body and the university. A total of 7 applications were turned it, proposing ideas that varied from building a garden space in President’s woods, to the winning project, proposed by Robin Hopkins, designing and placing a protective deer fence around the Campus Garden.
This fence will be 5 feet tall, in order to provide shelter and reduce the amount of food being lost every year .They also hope it will help to legitimize the garden and increase the amount of food produced and harvested. As Robin states, he believes that a fence will help give the Garden Club “greater legitimacy and attention that can lead it to new levels of involvement.” Additionally, as an Environmental Policy and Decision Making student and someone involved in SSC, Robin believes a fence is a capital investment “in the campus garden, the garden club, and the urban food production ideas that the student body and the university should support.”
Robin is not the only one excited about the fence. Our current Garden Club President Annie McCormick says, “a fence will really help with productivity over the summer.” This is great to hear as a student concerned with the outcome of student run initiatives during the months that students aren’t around to maintain them.
A fence like this is a great starting point for the green fee. It addresses an area of campus that hasn’t been used to its full potential, so a green fee allocation will bring awareness to the great resource and space that the garden is, and the dedication of those who manage it (the garden club). Additionally according to the Green Fee Review Committee, this project is a good representation of one of the key green fee ideas : projects for students by students. This doesn’t mean the project is only beneficial for students, as this project will clearly be utilized by more than one class, and one garden club. Finally, the review committee wanted to choose something that could be done before the year was out. This is great because a new group or individual can run a green fee selected project every year. So, if you had an idea that wasn’t chosen or you didn’t have time to submit, fret not, there will be other chances to apply!
As this is the first year of the green fee, there will be kinks to work out. But we are so excited to have this fund available, to allow students to put their ideas into practice.
Interested in being part of Robin’s team to build the fence, contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org . If you have any questions about the green fee, please email Kirsten Fahlbusch at email@example.com. If you want to know more about the garden and how to get more involved, email Annie McCormick at firstname.lastname@example.org.