By Gabrielle Waid
For the tenth year in a row, Rider has been named a Green College by the Princeton Review. Since the creation of the guide in 2010, Rider has been recognized each year for its attention to the environment and its efforts to keep the campus green.
According to the University press release by Adam Grybowski, Rider made its initial commitment to sustainability in 2007 when the university signed a charter called the Carbon Commitment, which mainly works to make college campuses more environmentally friendly. The importance of an environmentally-friendly campus is an ever-growing factor in the decision of what university to attend, and with that, Rider’s dedication and attention to the environment continues to grow.
Rider’s Sustainability Manager Melissa Greenberg commented on the recognition of the campus’s efforts to better the environment.
“It feels good to know that Rider continues to get recognized for being a green campus and that we have not strayed from the path that we are on,” she said.
Brianne Gallina, a senior and Eco-Rep for the Office of Sustainability, was thrilled to hear the news. She has been involved with the Office of Sustainability for three years. Gallina sees this recognition as confirmation that, “the Rider community is on the right track.”
“We are taking the necessary steps to reduce our carbon footprint,” Gallina said.
Rider has been able to stay on the path to sustainability by creating plans to reduce the campus’s carbon footprint and energy usage. The next step for the Office of Sustainability is the Energy Master Plan. This plan will work to reduce energy usage in campus buildings, and introduce “renewable energy to our campus as well as other forms of on campus energy production and storage,” according to Greenberg.
In previous years, the Office of Sustainability has completed other campus initiatives such as the Carbon Neutrality Plan and the Campus Master Plan.
These large-scale plans definitely put Rider on the map as a green campus, but there are also plenty of tasks that students and faculty can do to keep the campus green.
“The main things students could easily do to help make the campus greener would be to make good choices when it comes to their energy use, water use, recycling and getting educated about global environmental issues,” Greenberg said. “Simple things like shutting off light switches, unplugging electrical devices and appliances, sorting and disposing of their trash and recycling properly.”
Additionally, campus programs including Terracycle or Cupanion/Fill it Forward, among others, are simple day-to-day tasks in which students can contribute to an eco-friendly environment.
Any student looking to be hands-on with sustainability on campus should check out the upcoming events from the Office of Sustainability such as, America Recycles Day, which will take place on Nov. 14 at 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Student Recreation Center Atrium. In the spring, there will be other events such as the continuation of the Green Film series and a shared reading event hosted by Erin Brockovich.
Students can also get involved with green programs and initiatives by joining the Rider Green Team. Those interested can email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.