Earth Month activities to make campus greener

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

A tree planting, an Earth Day Festival and the spring Campus Cleanup are just some of the activities planned by Facilities Management to encourage the University community to become more aware of and involved in environmental issues throughout the month of April.

“With this year being the 49th celebration of Earth Day, we had to step up our game for our Earth Month activities," said Tyler Sytsma, University sustainability coordinator. "We've expanded the number of tree plantings, greatly increased participation in the Earth Day Festival, introduced outdoor movie screenings and much more. Students, staff and faculty will have ample opportunities to get involved and make a positive impact on our community and environment."

The springtime tradition of a large-scale campus tree planting continues at 9 a.m., Wednesday, April 3, at Hechenbleikner Lake, and 1 p.m. at Davis Pond (behind Memorial Hall). Come out to help shape the landscape of the campus by planting a tree.

The annual Earth Day Festival will be Wednesday, April 3, too. The festival, scheduled for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Belk Plaza, will bring together student organizations, campus entities, nonprofits and individuals who are involved in making the environment and community a better place. Food trucks will be on site.

This semester’s Campus Cleanup is set for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Thursday, April 11. Students, faculty and staff can visit one of three stations (Motorsports Lab, McMillan Greenhouse and South Village) to volunteer. Bags, gloves and other supplies will be provided. T-shirts will be given out to participants on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration is encouraged but not mandatory.

Chancellor Philip L. Dubois has authorized 90 minutes of release time for every employee to participate in the campus tree planting and/or the campus cleanup, pending supervisor approval.

Other Earth Month activities include an outdoor screening of the Academy Award-winning Best Documentary, “Free Solo,” at Belk Plaza during the week of April 8; the annual Spring Plant Sale will be April 11-13; the zero waste spring football game will be Saturday, April 13, and an EPIC Energy Seminar is scheduled for Tuesday, April 16.

For more information on any of the Earth Month activities, email Tyler Sytsma, University sustainability coordinator, at