OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Mississippi kicks off its fifth annual Green Week on Monday (April 22). The weeklong event, which runs through April 26, aims to educate students, faculty, staff and community members on the benefits of sustainable living, as well as the large impact a small adjustment in daily life can make.
“Green Week is important because it helps to spread knowledge about more sustainable living,” said Cortez Adams, a junior public policy major from Memphis and student coordinator of Green Week. “The various events that we have during the week help provide students with a fun avenue to learn about preserving the planet, beginning with things we can do in our own community.”
Green Week officially commences with a short ceremony, announcement of the on-campus Rebel Energy Challenge winners and a green step show by regional champions Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity at the Phi Mu Fountain at 10 a.m. Monday, which is Earth Day. At 7 p.m. in the Overby Center, featured speaker Janisse Ray will discuss-saving and its impact on food supply.
Wednesday activities include a 6 p.m. panel discussion featuring Melissa Collier of the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality and Rita Harris of the Sierra Club in Memphis, who will focus environmental justice and discuss the effects of environmental degradation on minority populations and low-income communities.
“Sustainable development can be very succinctly described as ‘Enough for all, forever,” said Anne McCauley, assistant director of the Office of Sustainability. “Many of our events this year connect with this description. From Janisse Ray’s lecture, we can reflect on the ‘enough‘ aspect, as she challenges us think about the dwindling diversity of seeds and the implications for the future of food. From the environmental justice event, we can reflect on the ‘for all’ aspect. I think it shows that there is a real human dimension to sustainability.”
Earlier in the day, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the annual Sustainability Fair on the Union Plaza will feature games, giveaways, a small farmers’ market and Green Week shirt printing by Ole Miss student group Print Rebellion. Students, faculty and staff who bring shirts can have them printed for free, or anyone can purchase a shirt at the fair.
UM instructor Milly West and her students also will sell Ole Miss ‘h2otty toddy’ water bottles during Green Week to encourage the use of reusable bottles on campus. The project is the first to be approved by the campus Green Fund, which started accepting donations and proposals this spring. All proceeds benefit the Green Fund and may be used to install additional hydration stations, where students can refill water bottles.
Rounding out the week is “Bike to Campus Day” and breakfast at the Student Union from 7:30 to 10 a.m. Friday. The breakfast is free for anyone who bikes to campus or stops by the Union Plaza to learn more about biking. The week’s final event, an eco-fashion show, is set for 7 p.m. Friday at the Jackson Avenue Center.
All events are free and open to the public. For more information about Green Week, click here.
Green Week 2013 Schedule of Events
Monday, April 22
10 a.m., Phi Mu Fountain – Green Week Kick-off
7 p.m., Overby Center – Green Week keynote address by writer and activist Janisse Ray
Wednesday, April 24
10 a.m.-2 p.m., Union Plaza – Sustainability Fair (POSTPONED TO FRIDAY, APRIL 26)
5:30 p.m., Bryant Hall (second floor)– “The Color of Environmental Racism” panel discussion. Reception begins at 5:30 p.m., with panel starting at 6 p.m.
Thursday, April 25
Noon-1 p.m., 4-5 p.m. – Medicinal Plant Garden tour and open house. Private tours are being scheduled throughout the day for student and faculty groups.
Friday, April 26
7:30-10 a.m., Union Plaza – Breakfast
10 a.m., Second Baptist Church – Arbor Day ceremony
7 p.m., Jackson Avenue Center – Eco-Fashion Show