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Earth Month highlights benefits of environmentally friendly activity

March 31, 2015

Earth Month 2015 at IUPUI will feature a wide range of activities, including the latest round of the popular dumpster dive tradition, a project that blends art and recycling, and a blend of information-laden events that highlight the benefits of environmentally friendly activity.

“Our Earth Month celebration continues to grow every year,” said Deb Ferguson, the assistant director of the Office of Sustainability. “This year’s events will appeal to all types of groups and interests, and many connect to the Student Sustainability Council’s ‘Year of Recycling’ initiative that is making a difference on the campus and its future.”

The schedule is led by the sustainability office and the Student Sustainability Council, but includes a host of partnerships that include the NCAA and the Division of Student Affairs (see related stories on the Final Four and the Campus Recreation Outdoor Facility dedication).

Dumpster dive

IUPUI students sort through bags of trash at last spring’s dumpster dive, learning about what is and isn’t recyclable. | IU COMMUNICATIONS PHOTO

The month starts Wednesday, April 1, in the Campus Center with an Earth Month kickoff event from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. The day features exhibits, a presentation by the Hoosier Environmental Council on “What Does the Indiana Legislature Have to Do With My Life?” and a discussion of “The Path to a Sustainable Career: Change, Flexibility and Sustainability in Life and Business.”

With spring already spreading its wings, the Undergraduate Student Government’s sustainability committee is working with Developing IUPUI Gardens Sunstainably to prepare the New York Street Garden for growing season from 9 a.m. to noon on April 11. Veterans of past seasons will help direct new students to the garden, which supports programs to feed the hungry and homeless in the city.

Earth Day on April 22 will feature the IUPUI dumpster dive beginning at 11 a.m. near the Business-SPEA building. A Pass the Mic event on environmental impact will start at noon, led by the Social Justice Education program.

From 5 to 8 p.m. that day, meet the artists who created Whole Earth II, followed at 7 p.m. by a forum “Earth in the Balance: Indy’s Efforts for a Sustainable Future” led by the SPEA Student Council and the Recycling Coalition.

On April 24, the Honors College Student Council will lead an Arbor Day of Service project from 9 a.m. to noon at a site to be determined. The following day, Earth Day Indiana will offer an interactive event to teach the community (including IUPUI guests) about sustainability and how to be more ‘green’ in every-day life. The event is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in White River State Park. That same day will feature the “Great Indy Clean Up” from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. based at the Mary Rigg Neighborhood Center, 1920 W. Morris St.

“The purpose of Earth Month is to raise awareness among students, faculty and staff about sustainability and the interdisciplinary approach we use to address interests that focus on the environment, social and behavioral influences and economic,” said SSC president Paul-Michael Montoya.

To keep up with all the events taking place on campus, including any schedule changes or new events that might crop up, visit the Office of Sustainability's website. Also visit “Happening at IUPUI.”

Other campus partners include the Herron School of Art and Design, the University Library Green Team, the National Society of Black Engineers, the Center for Earth and Environmental Sciences, Developing IUPUI Gardens Sustainably, the School of Public and Environmental Affairs Student Council, Democracy Plaza, Undergraduate Student Government, the Student Activities Programming Board, Scholars Helping Scholars, Campus Facility Services, the Office of Campus Visits and UITS Sustainable IT Services.

Community partners involved include the Purdue University Technical Assistance Program, the Indianapolis Zoo, the Hoosier Environmental Council, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, the Indiana Recycling Coalition and Ray’s Trash Services.

Note: This story is part of an ongoing series highlighting IUPUI's Strategic Plan initiatives.

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