The Center for Sustainability held its annual Earth Week, which included a long list of fun and informative events across campus, each taking a different approach to food and water sustainability practices.
Co-organizer [b]Dr. Deniz Leuenberger[/b], associate professor of political science, said a primary purpose of Earth Week is to spread awareness about BSU's numerous green initiatives that take place throughout the year on campus, including recycling projects, lectures and other programming.
"Earth Week aims to bring more people to the conversation, to get to know us better and get more involved with us," said Dr. Leuenberger. "The ultimate goal is then to move toward action."
A highlight of the week was the "Top Sustainability Chef" cooking competition held in the East Campus Commons cafeteria, which promoted clean cooking with sustainable food sources in the spirit of popular cooking shows, such as [i]Top Chef[/i] and [i]Iron Chef[/i].
For the competition, three competing chefs from the campus community created three plates for guest judges within a 30-minute time frame using only organic ingredients. They were awarded up to 20 points by each judge: 10 points for taste, five for presentation, and five for originality.
The chefs: [b]Sarah Hogue[/b], visiting lecturer of sociology; [b]Ross DeLuca[/b], visiting lecturer of communication studies; and [b]Dr. Sandra Clark[/b], professor of geography.
Guest judge was Terry Walters, author of [i]Clean Start: Inspiring You to Eat Clean and Live Well with 100 New Clean Food Recipes[/i] and [i]Clean Food: A Seasonal Guide to Eating Close to the Source with More Than 200 Recipes for a Healthy and Sustainable You[/i]. Additional judges included Center for Sustainability advisory board members [b]Dr. James Hayes-Bohanan[/b], professor of geography, and [b]Dr. Arthur Lizie[/b], chairperson for the communication studies. Event emcee was [b]Jeff Fowler[/b], '03, a BSU graduate who is station manager for Bridgewater Television (BTV) and executive producer of Bears Sports Network.
Another Earth Week highlight was the Social Justice League's fifth annual Just Trade Fair in the campus center's large ballroom. The fair each year presents campus and community members with information about socially and environmentally conscious products sold by various companies, some from the region. Fair-trade products on display included sweatshop-free clothing, organic coffee and food products, as well as free Ben and Jerry's ice cream.
Dr. Leuenberger said organizers aimed to offer a wide range of events for all types of audiences -- college students, faculty, staff, children and community members -- and promote a broad definition of sustainability and environmental issues. "We tried to reach out to as many audiences as possible," she said. "That way, people can find what best interests them."
Additional events featured numerous guest speakers, including Ben Hewitt, author of [i]The Town that Food Saved[/i], which is this year's One Book, One Community reading selection, and Sara Cogswell of Southeastern Massachusetts Agricultural Partnership (SEMAP).
Local school children also got in on the action, with Bridgewater/Rayhnman High School students participating in the "High School and Community Partners Celebration," hosted by Dr. Leuenberger, with keynote speakers [b]Dr. Nancy Van Leuven[/b], assistant professor of communication studies, and Danielle Newton. Additionally, local fourth-graders acted in a presentation of "The Good Garden: How One Family Went from Hunger to having Enough -- Dia de los ninos/Dia de los libros (Day of the Child/Day of the Book)," a play adapted and directed by Professor [b]Lisa Troy[/b] of BSU's Arts for Youth program and hosted by [b]Pamela Hayes-Bohanan[/b], associate librarian.
The week was co-sponsored by the Center for Sustainability, the Students for Sustainability organization, and the One Book, One Community program, among others. Next year's focus will be on work and labor. (Rob Matheson, '07, G '12, University Advancement)