Psych and Sustainabilty Community Service Learning and Outreach Projects
Professor Sue Koger received funding for her Psychology 121 course, in which students work to make a difference on campus or in the larger Salem Community Sustainability efforts. Students were required to volunteer 6-8 hour and to follow up the experience with outreach materials that use psychologically-based principles to educate and inspire more widespread social change. The fund gave Koger and her students funding for printing and distributing outreach materials, specifically relating to removing highly invasive English Ivy in Salem City Parks. Along with the Salem No-Ivy League and Straub Environmental Center, the class helped with outreach to the Salem community through flyers, posters, websites, and social media pages.
Student Tod Nakahira received funding for his Eastside recycling competition. The project worked to engage students in sustainability by encouraging them through competition. The competition took place in residence halls on the Eastside, and measured for total waste output and a recycle/trash ratio for 8 weeks on a weekly basis. This competition helped provide a motive for the students to use good waste reduction and recycling habits. It also provided for opportunities for students to be educated on the importance of putting their waste in the right bins. This project also helped lay the groundwork for future competitions like this.
Recycling Bin Standardization
After conducting a bin and sign audit of all recycling, garbage, and composting on campus, student Kristi Fukunaga set out to improve waste bins and signage. Fukunaga helped facilitate change on campus to decrease trash and cross contamination through the cooperation of faculty, staff, and students. Working with a team of associates, bins and signs were replaced and implemented in some place. Fukunaga worked alongside students Layla Flint and Abby Bernhard to expand the signage and bins that were newly established on Eastside.
Evan Greer Event
Student Sophia Brownstein ‘18 received Green Fund support for bringing Evan Greer, a trans/genderqueer musician/writer/activist, to perform and host an inclusive and interactive workshop for students. Greer encourages college students to use their schools’ entertainment budgets to support grassroots activists and organizers. The workshop focused on climate justice and the connections between climate change and other social issues and how marginalized groups often suffer most from the effects of climate change.
Menstral Cup Distribution
In November 2015, student Naomi Morgan requested funding in order to distribute menstrual cups to menstruators on campus through Bishop Wellness Center. Feminine hygiene products like pads and tampons are often both expensive and create a lot of waste. Morgan’s project seeked to give students accessibility to menstrual cups while acting in an environmentally friendly manner. The cups were distributed from Bishop and the project proved to be widely successful, leading to another similar project funded in 2017.
Biology Lab Waste
WU Biology department staff Jennifer Butler requested funding to hire a student (Sarah Brush) to conduct a waste stream analysis for the Biology Department and determine how to reduce waste associated with lab plastics. Sarah’s analysis allowed the biology department to divert over 500 lbs of waste to recycling annually as well as establishment of clear protocols for recycling in labs.
Social Life of a Pizza
Between June and August of 2016, students Owen Gow and Meredith Marshburn conducted research on the social and environmental impacts of cheese pizza served at Goudy Commons. The overall goal was to produce a quantitative assessment of the impact of the pizza, as well as a qualitative narrative of the people involved in the production process to accompany it. They achieved this goal through a series of interviews, getting in touch with the company that supplied ingredients used, measuring ecological footprint, and analyzing the effort in making the pizzas (through transportation, labor, energy used, etc).
Montag Bike Racks
Previous Campus Recreation Coordinator, Jordis Miller, received funding to place covered bike racks outside of Montag center in October, 2016. After seeing students struggling to find a dry and safe place to store bikes, especially students living on Eastside, Miller decided to do something to address the problem. After the bike racks were installed, Miller continued to explore bike safety and moving the bike shop into Montag, with the ultimate goal of giving students greater accessibility to bikes and the ability to travel Salem.
OMA First Generation Book Drive
The OMA Book Drive collects and distributes new and used books to first-generation Willamette University students from the Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA). The book drive began receiving Green Fund mini-grants in 2015 when it first created by Manny Rodriguez and has continued to apply and receive grants almost every year since. It has already donated nearly 2,000 books and continues to grow every year. The continuation of this project creates an important resource for first generation students, and gives a new life to used textbooks. If you have any used textbooks that you not longer want, consider donating them to the OMA Book Drive.
The Salem Spark: Communicating a Culture of Sustainability at WU
CCM professor Catalina de Onís received a Green Fund grant in Spring 2017 for her emergent communication-focused effort. Guided by Willamette University undergraduates, La Chispa seeks to enact communication praxis, including by developing workshops with Willamette Academy students and coordinating a weekly radio segment on KMUZ community radio called "Worldviews Wednesday." This program seeks to amplify perspectives and experiences that often are marginalized in dominant sustainability discourses and yet are essential for creating a just, equitable, and livable community. If you would like to learn more about how to participate in this project visit their website!
Rally for Science
In 2017, students Sarah Brush and Connor Rettig requested funding to hold a Rally for Science in conjunction with the nationwide March for Science that called for government support to fund science and the importance of scientific knowledge in the legislative process. The Rally included several faculty speakers and one student speaker who reflected on their experience with science as well as a letter-writing campaign to Oregon state congressmen pleading for support to fund science.