January 26, 2023
Eco-friendly faces: Meet Temple’s EcoReps advocating for a sustainable campus

As a part of Temple’s efforts to advance local weather motion and environmental justice, the Workplace of Sustainability acknowledges college students’ position as changemakers. Enter EcoReps—undergraduate peer educators who promote and lead sustainability initiatives throughout campus. They assist the workplace obtain its objectives via programming, outreach, service, analysis and communication across the college and Philadelphia.

This system is open to these of all majors with a ardour for preserving and defending our planet. To affix, college students first fill out an curiosity stock via Owl Join. 

There are three ranges of involvement. The primary degree is EcoVolunteer, which incorporates any scholar that’s a part of the Sustainability Owl Join or within the sustainability-associated Dwelling Studying Neighborhood. The second degree is EcoAdvocate, which seeks additional management alternatives and elevated sustainability literacy. EcoLeads, the third tier, apply for and work in paid positions as peer leaders within the workplace, specializing in explicit areas of curiosity.

EcoRep tasks, occasions and experiential studying experiences handle numerous sustainability subjects together with zero waste, meals methods, company social duty, transportation, and environmental science and engineering, amongst different points. Particular work EcoReps have executed contains founding a student-led, bike-powered natural waste pickup service referred to as Diamond Compost; making a TikTok collection about tips on how to stay inexperienced; facilitating a teach-in about native environmental justice points; and coordinating the sustainable move-out program Give + Go Inexperienced in addition to Temple Thrift, along with different actions.

Meet just a few of Temple’s extremely concerned EcoReps to find out about their particular initiatives and what sustainability means to them. 

Eco-friendly faces: Meet Temple’s EcoReps advocating for a sustainable campus

Juliana Alderfer

Commencement yr: 2023

Main/faculty: Environmental engineering, School of Engineering

Hometown: Souderton, Pa.

Sustainability focus: Innovation and inexperienced dwelling

Sparked by a ardour for environmentalism in highschool, Juliana Alderfer grew to become concerned with the Workplace of Sustainability as quickly as she heard about it at Temple. After attending occasions, attending to know these within the workplace and studying extra about its mission, she climbed up the ranks of the EcoRep program. She leads Inexperienced Dwelling, an eight-week interactive problem to stay extra sustainably, centered on subjects comparable to aware consumption, power, meals and water.

Moreover, as president of Temple’s chapter of Engineers With out Borders, Alderfer helped conduct a waste audit of trash and recycling from Temple college students to study their waste patterns and decide tips on how to mitigate single-use plastic overconsumption via a Pupil Inexperienced Grant. She’s making a dataset from this audit to current to people who design a lot of the outside infrastructure on campus. Her analysis in an environmental engineering lab has additional fueled her ardour for conservation and advocacy because it has allowed her to seek out the science behind coverage.

“The work I’m doing makes me really feel like I’m making a distinction and affecting the bigger system. However what’s most rewarding is assembly individuals who deeply care about these points and are passionately preventing for the longer term. It offers me a number of hope.”

Dayja Burton standing against a window

Dayja Burton

Commencement yr: 2024

Main/faculty: Provide chain, Fox College of Enterprise

Hometown: Washington, D.C.

Sustainability focus: Company social duty and sustainable enterprise

Since attending an info session from the Workplace of Sustainability throughout her first yr, Dayja Burton has been dedicated to a sustainable way of life. She joined the EcoRep program quickly after that info session, taking an curiosity in sustainable buying. As an EcoLead, Burton has introduced on ways in which campus accomplice Aramark can enhance its providers by providing extra vegan and domestically sourced choices and permitting college students to make use of their very own reusable mugs at Temple eateries.

She has additionally led scholar excursions to Good Purchase Provide, an area dwelling items retailer that sells sustainably made merchandise, and is an advocate for purchasing and buying sustainably. Her ideas for buying embody going thrifting, buying glass containers over plastic ones and reusing gadgets already in your possession as a substitute of shopping for new ones.

“It issues how we deal with the earth and the way we deal with one another. Earth is our solely dwelling. Being sustainable is an efficient method to take heed to the selections we make and be kinder to others as a result of each buy impacts one other individual and the surroundings.”

Mason Dofflemyer surrounded by greenery

Mason Dofflemyer

Commencement yr: 2023

Main/faculty: Environmental research, School of Liberal Arts

Hometown: Studying, Pa.

Sustainability focus: Environmental justice and concrete agriculture

For Mason Dofflemyer, an enormous a part of sustainability is folks—particularly, getting them conscious of and enthusiastic about preventing for local weather motion. Inquisitive about making others a part of this motion, he first participated within the Service Immersion Program held by Pupil Actions the place he met Senior Sustainability Supervisor Caroline Burkholder, who recruited him to be an EcoRep.

As a part of the Liberal Arts Undergraduate Analysis Awards, Dofflemyer has labored with Affiliate Professor of Geography and City Research Christina Rosan on a white paper and map outlining locations inside and outdoors of town the place EcoReps have labored on sustainability tasks. The objective of the analysis mission is to encourage experiential studying outdoors of the classroom inside each the School of Liberal Arts and the college as a complete in order that college students can collaborate with others on environmental justice points.

One other ardour of Dofflemyer’s is the Temple Neighborhood Backyard. The backyard helps fight meals insecurity and waste by offering free produce to the neighborhood each Friday from 3 p.m. to five p.m.

“It’s actually cool to see change via a coalition of scholars enthusiastic about sustainability. We now have an enormous stake in it. It’s empowering to see how many individuals care.”

Riya Shah on Mazur Terrace

Riya Shah

Commencement yr: 2024

Main/faculty: Well being professions, School of Public Well being

Hometown: Bridgewater, NJ

Sustainability focus: Sustainable meals methods/meals waste

Riya Shah knew no matter faculty she selected needed to have a robust sustainability program with scholar involvement, which is what led her to Temple. Even in her first yr throughout COVID-19, she discovered alternatives to get entangled within the Workplace of Sustainability via digital occasions. Shah then began volunteering at them as a sophomore when in-person lessons and actions resumed. She now serves because the sustainable meals methods EcoLead.

On this position, she organizes and develops low-carbon consuming workshops wherein she presents plant-based recipes to college students and informs them about how our meals selections have an effect on the local weather, emphasizing the affordability and accessibility of such meals. She has additionally organized journeys to co-ops such because the Kensington Neighborhood Meals Co-op and is an e-board member of the scholar membership Sharing Extra, which collects meals from native organizations to donate to shelters and soup kitchens.

“Lots of people don’t take into consideration the meals selections they make or how and why they need to be making selections which are extra in tune with the surroundings. Even realizing I’m altering one individual’s perspective is essentially the most rewarding half.”

Kelley Simon surrounded by greenery

Kelley Simon

Commencement yr: 2023

Main/faculty: Geography and concrete research, School of Liberal Arts

Hometown: Pittsburgh, Pa.

Sustainability focus: Sustainable transportation and environmental planning

Kelley Simon was launched to EcoReps via studying tips on how to repair a motorbike. From there, Simon participated within the Secondhand Cycle Sale, which collects deserted bikes round campus, opens pop-up bike restore clinics and finally sells the restored bikes at a reduced value. Moreover, Simon labored on geographic info methods surveys of motorcycle parking on campus to find out not solely availability but in addition accessibility, location and capability. 

Alongside along with his work in sustainable transportation, Simon performed a tree stock for Major Campus to estimate Temple’s progress towards contributing to Philadelphia’s tree cover and the ecological advantages comparable to storm water seize, carbon seize and air pollution removing. He additionally helped develop a sustainable campus map.

“Change must occur from the within out, particularly at an enormous establishment like Temple. Individuals needs to be educated about what’s taking place to our planet. Sustainability is vital to creating a distinction on this planet and preserving it for future generations.”

Hear extra from our EcoReps on Instagram.