Update: Summer Experience for Central Ohio Internship Students

The Summer ’22 ROAR Academy is a great “add-on” to any Central Ohio student in an internship related to environment & sustainability. The Academy includes some training and credentialing, social events, and excursions. The experience also promotes networking with a significant group of central Ohio organizations and professionals.

A tentative schedule of activities is below. Cool stuff. Three OWU students are participating and about a dozen additional students from Kenyon, Denison and Otterbein.

Contact: Terry Hermsen: thermsen@otterbein.edu

PDF of the above image is here.

Green Week, May Move Out, Food Recovery Network … !!!

Green Week 2022 +++

Ohio Wesleyan Student Event to Celebrate Earth Day and Other Eco-Friendly Initiatives

By Cole Hatcher

One day – or even one week – isn’t enough time to highlight all of the Earth-friendly initiatives being spearheaded on campus this spring by Ohio Wesleyan University students.

Instead, Environment and Sustainability students, residents of the Tree House small living unit, and others are planning a Green Week that will kick off Monday, April 18, and conclude Tuesday, April 26.

“Yep, Green Week and a half,” said John Krygier, Ph.D., professor of Environment & Sustainability.

A Packed Calendar

Students are planning a calendar of activities that includes information about how to reduce, recycle, and repurpose waste along with lunchtime tabling sessions with long-term environmental partners Del-Co Water Company and the city’s Public Utilities Department to discuss sustainability efforts. Both organizations also will share career and internship information.

The Green Week activities will include an April 23 trash cleanup in collaboration with the Unity Community Center and conclude April 26 with students enrolled in a renewable energy course presenting their research at 10:30 a.m. in the atrium of Schimmel/Conrades Science Center.

Treehouse moderator SK Bulander ’23 of Los Angeles, California, is coordinating this year’s events calendar.

“2040 is the non-negotiable deadline of overhauling our fossil fuel-dependent world before the Earth reaches a global average temperature of 1.5°C and is irreversibly damaged,” said Bulander, an Environmental Science and English (Literature) double major. “In the shadow of such a gargantuan task, it can be terrifying and stressful to even consider the idea of sustainability. My vision for Green Week is that it will give OWU students the tools to make meaningful lifestyle changes that are bite-sized.”

Numerous Opportunities to Get Involved

“Look for activities like ‘Plant-based Problem Solving,’ where students can learn about everyday low-waste and plant-based swaps, and ‘Bee-less Wax Wraps,’ which will instruct on how to make vegan wax wraps as an alternative to plastic wrap, plastic bags, tin foil, plastic lids, and many other single-use items. Make sure to donate old clothes to the pop-up campus trade store and pick up some new, re-used fits,” Bulander continued.

“Meanwhile, Green Week will provide students with a space to analyze the corporate forces driving the climate crisis,” she said. “This includes events like ‘An Introduction to Textiles,’ wherein students will learn about the environmental impacts of the textile industry, and ‘The Root of it: How Community Gardens in the U.S. Combat Food Insecurity,’ at which students can participate in a discussion panel with local community gardens and OWU professors on food insecurity at both the national and local level.

I hope that it will be apparent that there are numerous on-campus and nearby groups pushing for environmental action,” Bulander concluded. “Students looking to get more involved in the environmental side of OWU should join the Sustainability Task Force for monthly meetings that bring together the university’s administrators, faculty, staff, and students for updates on OWU’s environmental movements. It provides a great space for networking for careers in sustainability and acts as an excellent starting point for becoming more involved in clubs. I would also recommend they try out Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL) to advocate for local, bipartisan carbon emission-cutting legislation, especially in our extremely divisive political landscape today.”

May Move Out Recycling

On Earth Day (April 22), the group will launch this year’s May Move Out initiative, which urges students to donate usable clothing, books, furniture, household goods, and other items as they clear out their rooms at the end of the semester. Begun in 2012, the decade-old program typically recovers 10 tons of material annually that otherwise would go to a landfill.

Large, temporary storage pods will be set up to collect donations in parking lots at the Chi Phi fraternity on Williams Drive and at the Bradford Milligan, Smith, Stuyvesant, and Welch residence halls. Items will be accepted from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. during the collection period and then donated to Goodwill. For more information and a list of acceptable items and donation dates, visit maymoveout.owu.edu.

May Move Out coordinator Graham Steed ’23 of Marion, Ohio, said he hopes students take the time to sort and donate all of their recyclables.

“Each item they dispose of has great impact on the well-being of our ecosystem and society,” said Steed, an Environmental Studies major. “Not only does each piece of trash travel great distances to landfills within our country or others, which produces large amounts of CO2, but also once they get there, they pollute the local community from toxic runoff. These communities are most often poor and communities of color, which further adds an intersectional aspect to this issue.”

Recovering Food, Nourishing Others

In addition to Green Week and May Move Out, Ohio Wesleyan students this semester also are relaunching an initiative to share unused dining hall food with the community. Ohio Wesleyan is a member of the national Food Recovery Network.

Students Abby Charlton ’25 of Newark, Ohio, and Savannah Domenech ’25 of Webster, New York, are overseeing this renewed effort, which includes collecting unused food once a week.

Domenech, an Environmental Studies and Geography double major, said of a recent collection, “we got over 30 pounds of food consisting of buffalo chicken, beef brisket, steamed rice, and mixed vegetables. However, in the past, the club has gotten over a hundred pounds of food for one recovery. After we weigh the food, we cart it over to Grace Clinic across the street, and they distribute it to their patients.”

Improving Water Quality

Another initiative restored this semester is the use of a storm net to collect debris from the Delaware Run, which flows through the north side of campus on its way to the Olentangy River. The 13,000-pound, 4-foot-high, 18.5-foot-wide, concrete-weighted storm net structure was installed into the Delaware Run in 2019, prior to the pandemic.

Students Logan Honchul ’24 of Trenton, Ohio, and AJ Lashway ’23 of Niskayuna, New York, began working with the City of Delaware’s Department of Public Utilities this semester to restore the net, monitor it, and analyze the items collected.

“I’m hoping to get more experience in water-quality testing, since my background in that aspect is more limited,” said Lashway, a Zoology, Environmental Science, and Creative Writing triple major. “It’s such an important part of understanding the health of bodies of water, so I’m excited to get better at properly analyzing the collected data. It will also be a great experience to be able potentially make changes based on the information we gather.”

Honchul said she also is interested in learning and honing skills to support her career goal of working in wildlife conservation.

“As a Zoology major, I have a strong passion for animals, and working with them in any capacity excites me,” said Honchul, who is double majoring in Environmental Science and minoring in Communications. “I hope I am able to help improve the local wildlife habitat. I hope to learn about how much litter and debris really affect local water life.”

Learn more about Ohio Wesleyan’s Department of Environment and Sustainability at owu.edu/environment.

Apply Now: Student Sustainability Coordinator: 2022-23 Position

 

Applications for the Fall 2022 – Spring 2023 Student Sustainability Coordinator position are open.

Applications are due Tuesday, April 5th at 11:59 p.m. 

Brief interviews: March 22nd – April 19th.

Decision: Wednesday, April 27th

Questions: Talk to Krygier

Apply here: 2022-2023 On-Campus Internship Student Application

STAP Internship Title: Student Sustainability Coordinator

This position links to ongoing campus-wide efforts to improve sustainability, including a revision of our 2017 Sustainability Plan and a CleanTech U proposal that would substantially affect OWU’s campus and student experience.

Position Description: The Student Sustainability Coordinator position plays a vital role in maintaining and developing sustainability efforts on campus.

The student will organize and lead the campus Sustainability Task Force and liaise with the Environment & Sustainability Department (Anderson, Krygier, Rowley). Students in the position will also work with faculty, staff, and students (including those in Geography 360 & Geography 499) on-campus sustainability projects. Typically, the student attends the 0.25 credit ENVS 100.2/400.1 Conversations Towards a Sustainable Future course and works with new ENVS students.

Students may engage with additional research projects with ENVS faculty, pursue environmental activism efforts, help manage OWU’s Green Week, May Move Out, and other initiatives. Two students who previously held the position were authors on research papers published in part based on work undertaken while in a STAP position. The 2019-20 coordinator was awarded a PhD level graduate fellowship with full funding. 

Skills/Qualifications Required: Candidates should be organized, enthusiastic, and work well with other people (students, staff, faculty). Experience with sustainability efforts on campus helps. Ability to maintain outreach and scheduling while working well without excessive oversight. Basic ability to use Google Drive apps, Doodle, etc. necessary. But who can’t do that?

Examples of Assignments/Duties: Sustainability Task Force (leadership, organization, content) in collaboration with Anderson, Krygier, Rowley. Assist with organization of May Move Out, Green Week, campus habitat enhancements (Chimney Swift Tower, bird habitats, etc.), recycling issues, food issues, composting, liaise with WCSA, Tree House, Citizens Climate Lobby, regional ROAR collaboration (Otterbein, Denison, Kenyon, etc.), City of Delaware, MTSO, Stratford, Preservation Parks.

Applications: Students interested broadly in the environment and sustainability. Environmental Science, Environmental Studies, Biological and Earth Sciences, P&G, Sociology, Nutrition, Psychology, etc. Future interests in environmental leadership, careers in the environment, graduate school

Unique Responsibilities: This position, as described above, is literal career training in that it requires passion and competence while allowing the student to pursue and develop important, practical skills. In addition, some previous students have used this position to engage in research, publication, and use the experience as a springboard to graduate school. Responsibility, leadership, motivation, and working for the better good of the environment and sustainability on campus and beyond are central to this position.

Moving Sustainability Forward at OWU: Upcoming Meetings

Mark your calendars and watch for more information on two upcoming really important meetings regarding sustainability at OWU:

Thursday, February 10 at 6 pm (Beeghly Library 2nd Floor Bayley Room)
Friday, February 11 at noon (Beeghly Library 2nd Floor Bayley Room)

We are asking for volunteers to help with the first significant update to OWU’s Sustainability Plan since 2017. This is good for OWU and good for participants, who will engage in what is in essence a professional sustainability effort. This group and its efforts are not formally affiliated with or endorsed by the OWU administration but will develop a plan and set of recommendations in line with current sustainability practices, at peer institutions, organizations, and companies.

I will update this blog posting in the near future with more details.

Some background:

It’s been five years since OWU’s first Sustainability Plan – created by students – was adopted by OWU. The plan is, frankly, a bit toothless. It was vetted by students (primarily Emily Howald, ’18) and adjusted to the realities of an institution that was not yet ready to commit to more challenging sustainability goals. Keep in mind this was a time of major fundraising for the very important OWU Connection and also one of increasing enrollment challenges (felt by all colleges, as the number of college-age students declines in the US).

OWU is making progress. For example, the map below (right mouse click to see larger map) documents both existing and proposed sustainability projects on campus. These are largely grassroots projects, most involving students and the OWU Connection.

Move forward to Fall of 2021. Fred Copeman, OWU ’11, is in the graduate program for Sustainability Management at Columbia University. He takes on OWU as a case study, in a course, assessing the means by which OWU can seriously institute sustainability institution-wide.

Spring 2022: Fred will be on campus to move the effort forward on Thursday, February 10, and Friday, February 11. Meetings with students, staff, and faculty are scheduled for Thursday, February 10 at 6 pm (Beeghly Library 2nd Floor Bayley Room) and Friday, February 11 at noon (Beeghly Library 2nd Floor Bayley Room).

Updates coming soon.

DOES Lunch: Alex Clemetson: Environmental Justice & Race: Tues. Oct. 5 @ Noon

Environment and Race: The Work of Sustainable Community Building

Department of Environment & Sustainability @ OWU

We welcome Alex Clemetson to Ohio Wesleyan to speak to us about his work and experiences surrounding environmentalism and race.

The intention of this discussion is to begin an initial examination into the intersections of environmental justice and injustice, race, and the communities that surround these co-existing realities. Within this DOES Lunch we will also examine the foundations of the communities we are connected to and the sustainable practices of community building that may or may not be in place.

Please come and learn about his experiences and collaborating to make the field of the environment a more equitable space.

When: Tuesday 05 October 2021 at noon
Where: SCSC #207 (GIS Lab)

We’re currently working on some form of food available, so please let Dr. Rowley know if you have any food restrictions.

 

Sept. 11: Olentangy River Festival!

The 8th Annual Olentangy River Festival will be held Saturday, September 11. For the first time, the festival is being held during the academic year, and OWU students can more easily participate.

Students who want to volunteer can contact John Krygier (ENVS)

May Move Out ’21

After a year’s pause, due to the COVID, May Move Out is back for 2021.

May Move Out is OWU’s student-created and managed program to keep tons of usable materials out of the landfill each spring.

Volunteers contact Meg Edwards: email or sign up on this spreadsheet.

It’s simple:

Students can easily donate unneeded stuff to Goodwill as they move off-campus.

Mobile storage pods with May Move Out banners are placed around the residential side of campus for ease of donation.

Dump your stuff in the pod and get on your way. It’s that easy.

In previous years we’ve deferred up to 10 tons of reusable stuff.

More info here: http://maymoveout.owu.edu

 

Apply now! Student Sustainability Coordinator STAP Position, 2021-22

Please consider applying for the paid Student Sustainability Coordinator STAP position for the 2021-22 academic year.

This is a paid position, 6 hours per week.

The coordinator works with faculty in ENVS and the Sustainability Task Force on-campus initiatives and efforts related to the environment and sustainability.

This position requires initiative, engagement, and passion – and is central to our sustainability efforts on campus.

A description of the position is below. Ask John Krygier if you have questions!

Apply before: Wednesday, April 7th at 11:59 pm

Apply here

Eligibility here

Student Sustainability Coordinator

The Student Sustainability Coordinator position plays a vital role in maintaining and developing sustainability efforts on campus.

The student will organize and lead the campus Sustainability Task Force and liaise with the Environment & Sustainability Department (Anderson, Krygier, Rowley). Students in the position will also work with faculty, staff, and students (including those in Geography 360 & Geography 499) on-campus sustainability projects. Typically, the student attends the 0.25 credit ENVS 100.2/400.1 Conversations Towards a Sustainable Future course and works with new ENVS students.

Students may engage with additional research projects with ENVS faculty, pursue environmental activism efforts, help manage OWU’s Green Week, May Move Out, and other initiatives. Two students who previously held the position were authors on research papers published in part based on work undertaken while in a STAP position. The last student to hold the position was recently awarded a PhD level graduate fellowship with full funding.

Candidates should be organized, enthusiastic, and work well with other people (students, staff, faculty). Experience with sustainability efforts on campus helps. Ability to maintain outreach and scheduling while working well without excessive oversight. Basic ability to use Google Drive apps, Doodle, etc. necessary. But who can’t do that?

Sustainability Task Force (leadership, organization, content) in collaboration with Anderson, Krygier, Rowley. Assist with organization of May Move Out, Green Week, campus habitat enhancements (Chimney Swift Tower, bird habitats, etc.), recycling issues, food issues, composting, liaise with WCSA, Tree House, Citizens Climate Lobby, regional ROAR collaboration (Otterbein, Denison, Kenyon, etc.), City of Delaware, MTSO, Stratford, Preservation Parks.

Students interested broadly in the environment and sustainability. Environmental Science, Environmental Studies, Biological and Earth Sciences, P&G, Sociology, Nutrition, Psychology, etc. Future interests in environmental leadership, careers in the environment, graduate school.

This position, as described above, is literal career training in that it requires passion and competence while allowing the student to pursue and develop important, practical skills. In addition, some previous students have used this position to engage in research, publication, and use the experience as a springboard to graduate school. Responsibility, leadership, motivation, and working for the better good of the environment and sustainability on campus and beyond are central to this position.

Position is both Fall 2021 & Spring 2022 Semesters
 

Food & Farm & Enviro Education Internships, central Ohio, Summer 2021

 

Two partner institutions, the Seminary Hill Farm at MTSO and Stratford Ecological Center & Farm are offering summer 2021 internships. Both locations are just south of OWU.

For students interested in sustainable agriculture, environmental education, and science education.

Please apply soon if you are interested: Please share these opportunities with others.

SEMINARY HILL FARM (AT MTSO)

These are full-time, paid internships working at the farm. You can arrange course internship credit through OWU if you wish.

Details on internships here.


STRATFORD ECOLOGICAL CENTER

Sustainable Agriculture Intern:
Contact Jeff at farmscaper@stratfordecologicalcenter.org

Environmental Education Intern
Contact April at aprilhoy@stratfordecologicalcenter.org

5th Grade Life Sciences Intern:
Contact Katryn at onthetrails@stratfordecologicalcenter.org

Details on internships here.

Renew Delaware: Renewable Community Electric Aggregation on Ballot

republished from Sustainable Delaware

Renewable Community Electric Aggregation 

What is the ‘Renew Delaware’ ballot issue?

Sustainable Delaware Ohio (SDO) is advocating for the placement of a renewable electricity aggregation issue on the fall 2021 ballot.  This ballot would give the City the power to negotiate a bulk price for purchasing electricity on behalf of you, its residents, and small businesses. The goal of the ballot is to lower household electric bills and increase the use of renewable (green) energy.

This is NOT A LEVY, meaning there will be no taxes on any resident, business, or other entity within the city limits.

We propose an Opt-Out solution, which automatically enrolls all local residents, unless they individually opt-out of the program and choose not to be included.

What needs to happen?

SDO urges the City of Delaware to make RENEWABLE a part of the proposed community electricity aggregation by seeking the maximum “green” content in proposals from suppliers.

  1. The Delaware City Council needs to be informed on what OPTIONS are available for electricity regarding opt-in/opt-out, net-metering, duration of the program, green energy, and compensation of energy consultants.
  2. Council requests proposals from a half-dozen energy consultants and selects one that meets the criteria.
  3. November Ballot: The Council will vote to put this issue on the ballot and submit it to the Delaware County Board of Elections prior to August 4 (at 4 p.m.).
  4. Informing all Delaware residents: by providing clear and transparent information. SDO offers the City of Delaware its assistance with that, as well as the Ohio Energy Council (OEC) and Councilman David Robinson from Worthington.
  5. Call your Council Member to tell them you support this issue.
  6. YOUR VOTE in November (it matters!)
  7. After this ballot measure gets approved by Delaware residents (November elections), the City can negotiate the most favorable contract for its residents based on cost and amount of green energy.
ReNew Delaware Benefits You
  • No Change in Service: Under this program, you would experience no change in their electric service. AEP would continue to carry, service, and bill for the electricity service. The only change would be in the source of the electricity which will be identified on the AEP bill.
  • COST SAVINGS: Worthington implemented a similar program and it saved their residents $46,024.62 in the first five months alone.  (see this PDF)
  • OPT-OUT: SDO advocates for a no-cost opt-out option for residents who do not wish to participate in the program, otherwise you are automatically enrolled.
  • RENEWABLE ENERGY: Choosing this means you are part of a cleaner energy solution, and you can be proud of that! Renewable energy puts less greenhouse gasses in the air, and reduces our carbon footprint, especially if we use local resources.
Renew Delaware Benefits City and State

Delaware would join a number of other communities in the State of Ohio to choose renewable electricity aggregation. However, not all aggregation is the same. SDO finds the following important:

  • REDUCE CARBON FOOTPRINT: (needs estimate)
  • JOBS CREATED IN OHIO: For example, AEP’s Integrative Renewable Energy program uses OHIO WIND & SOLAR assets which supports job growth in Ohio.
  • KEEP OUR TAXES IN OHIO: AEP is building renewable energy projects in Ohio, while other programs purchase credits from companies in other States and our taxes leave the state.
  • NO MONEY OUT OF POCKET: This does not cost the City of Delaware any money.
  • COMMUNITY INVESTMENT GRANTS: AEP has community investment grants available that can be used toward any project within the city, though we would like them to be sustainable.
Renew Delaware logo - Renewable Energy Aggregation
How Green Energy Saves 

The renewable energy will be purchased by way of Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs). Based on other communities’ experiences, it is expected that bulk pricing will make green energy feasible.

The current market rate in an aggregation program is no more than 4.75 cents/kWh fixed, while the five-year utility average has been roughly 6 Cents/kWh. As the typical household uses 12,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) per year, the projected estimated savings per household would be: .06000-.04750)x12,000 = $150.00

The City of Delaware has approximately 17,000 households. At 70% participation, the estimated annual savings for the community would be: 17,000x.70x$150.00 = $1,785,000

Questions?

For questions about this initiative, you can email us, or you can contact your Council representative for your ward.