Council on Presidential Affairs to host summit to certify sustainability on campus

In an effort to create awareness about sustainability on campus and within student organizations, Council on Presidential Affairs will host a Green Summit Oct. 7.

The event, which will be held in the Reilly Room, will determine which of the nearly 150 student organizations on campus can be certified as “green organizations.”

“We want to create a more proactive approach to sustainability issues within our student organizations and make a positive impact on how students can be more environmentally aware and concerned,” Mike Tirman, CPA chair, said.

CPA recently added $3,000 to its $9,000 budget to help cover costs of the summit, which will include a green comedian and student workshops, Becky Pokrandt, a green operations committee member, said.

“We’re going to have students try to brainstorm ways to make their organizations more green,” she said. “Hopefully we can come up with some resolutions before the event is over.”

The goal is to come up with initiatives that are both beneficial and tangible on Butler’s campus.

“These proposals should be things students will want to embrace,” Tirman said.

The committee that created this event started as an idea for a campaign last year.

Katie Palmer, academic affairs committee coordinator for CPA, said, “The group is firmly dedicated to taking Butler to the next level [of green development].

“The fact that we are making as big—and maybe an even bigger—impact on other schools and campuses with our efforts is one of the many secondary benefits that come out of doing this.”

Student organizations will also be certified as green organizations if they meet requirements based on paper and energy consumption set forth by SGA.

When green operations committee member Ginnye Cubel read an article in Indianapolis’ NUVO Newsweekly about Phil van Hest, a local comedian who grows his own food and makes some of his own clothing, she pushed to invite him to the event.

She said she hopes that the comedian will attract more students to the event.

“I thought it would be a different mix-up from strictly academic speakers,” Cubel said. “He will be able to incorporate comedy while letting us know what he’s doing in Indianapolis to live a sustainable life.”

At the SGA meeting Sept. 21, Tirman said van Hest would charge the organization about $1,000, which was “more than expected.”

Tirman said he was not certain about the exact cost, but the price is typical for a guest speaker and is within CPA’s budget.

“We’re going to have to pay him, but he’s giving us a discount,” Pokrandt said.

Tirman said Butler sets an example not only for its students but also for the community and campuses across the country.

“We want to be a model—a paradigm for other schools so they can look at us and say, ‘Woah, Butler’s doing a great job. They are actually doing something,’” Tirman said.


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