Organizations meet to discuss Earth Week events

By Leah Nicolini

More than ten student-run organizations discussed how to collaborate for Earth Week, which was created by Stuart Nissenbaum, Student Association director of Environmental Affairs.

The goal of Earth Week, which will be April 18-23, is to get NIU students interested in being environmentally friendly by participating in various events on campus. More events will be announced within the next two weeks, Nissenbaum said at a meeting on Sunday at DuSable Hall.

The Geography Club, the Committee for the Preservation of Wildlife, Green Paws Environmental Alliance, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Club, Vegetarian Education Group, Geology Club, Communiversity Gardens, Illinois Lakes Management Association, Sustainability, Environment and Recycling Management Association and various branches of the Student Association were in attendance.

“It is important to remember that Earth Week should not end on April 23 because the overall green initiative is something to consistently push for on campus,” Nissenbaum said.

The Committee for the Preservation of Wildlife

The Committee for the Preservation of Wildlife will hold a bat show with live Egyptian and African straw-colored fruit bats 7 p.m. April 19 in Montgomery Hall, Montgomery Auditorium. Along with an educational session on these bats, the group will sell bat boxes to make sure bats have places to sleep, said Brian Bose, president of the Committee for the Preservation of Wildlife.

“[The goal of the committee is] to protect and conserve wildlife, prevent environmental degradation and increase awareness and appreciation of the natural world,” Bose said.

The 10-member committee, along with NIU staff and students from other clubs, began growing more than 100 plants in March to sell during Earth Week 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 20-22 in Montgomery Auditorium. The committee grew six to seven species of low maintenance plants like succulents and native Illinois plants like milkweed

Geography Club

Geoguessing with the Geography Club will give students an interactive opportunity to use their reasoning skills by identifying various components of geography like plant life in a random location done on a computer with GeoGuessr 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 21 in Davis Hall.

“Everyone associates Geography Club with maps and that’s it,” said Geography Club Treasurer Casey Heller. “We want to show students that we do more than make maps.”

Different things that feed into geography beyond mapping include water management, urban transportation and meteorology. Heller said she is currently working on a project involving geographical vulnerability and hazards.

Green Paws Environmental Alliance

Green Bash, organized by the Green Paws Environmental Alliance, is a day dedicated to featuring all the organizations involved in Earth Week and include things like tie-dye, a dunk tank and food from Pita Pete’s 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 22 at the Martin Luther King Jr. Commons. The Green Paws Environmental Alliance will be accepting donations for Raven’s Husky Haven and Rescue, 27779 Five Points Road in Sycamore. The rescue takes in huskies in need, rehabilitates them and trains and socializes them for adoption.

The alliance’s goal is to make NIU a more sustainable campus with campaigns like purchasing a PepsiCo Dream Machine, which promotes recycling by printing coupons for local businesses every time a person recycles with the machine.

Ben Stone, president of the Green Paws Environmental Alliance, said member Allison Gladkowski is applying for a grant to purchase a pulper. A pulper functions to decompose food waste and other compostable materials into gardening material for the Communiversity Gardens or into gases for electricity, Stone said.

If approved, the pulper would be put outside of Neptune Hall because the pulper requires a loading deck and open space, Stone said.