EC Students and Faculty Join Global Climate Strike
September 27, 2019
Hundreds of Earlham College students and faculty will join other activists around the world in a climate strike and teach-in on Friday, September 27.
The events will begin at 10:30 a.m., and include student- and faculty-led demonstrations and lectures about Earlham’s energy systems, soils and sustainable agriculture, research and controversies in global climate change, and carbon footprints and circular economies. Environmental officials from Wayne County, Indiana, and non-profit consultants from the region also are leading discussions and demonstrations.
“I thought it was really important to have a big event to coincide with this global movement and these events taking place around the world,” says Cynthia Fadem, associate professor of geology and one the organizers of the event. “When we think about the climate system and the everyday changes around the world, I want to make those connections clear for people closer to home.”
Earlham has always supported scientific inquiry, and current students have a particular interest in better understanding the causes of climate change, she notes.
The Earlham community was encouraged to participate in activities as their schedules allowed. Classes were not canceled.
“Climate change is well-documented by scientific research and is one of the gravest concerns facing the world today,” Earlham President Anne Houtman says. “I salute our students and faculty for organizing this climate strike to keep the issue at the forefront of public discussion. I am proud to join them in signing the Climate Commitment for Earlham College.”
In addition to the day’s events, the Lilly Library has established a temporary display of environmental literature and films available in its collections. The resources will be on display through October 20.
Earlhamites become leaders in environmental sustainability on campus by participating in the Eco Reps, Student Sustainability Corps or the College’s experiential agriculture program at Miller Farm, initiatives that are supported by the College’s Environmental Leadership Program.
Students wanting to apply their interest in environmental change within a major at Earlham may do so in Environmental Sustainability, Biology, Geology, Sociology/Anthropology, Japanese Studies, Peace & Global Studies, and Politics. There are also many environment-related courses at Earlham in English, Economics, Chemistry, and a number of other departments. Earlham also offers minors in Outdoor Education and Archaeology, and pre-term wilderness excursions that promote environmental ethics.
Further opportunities for students to engage in faculty-mentored research in sustainability are integrated across the curriculum and through community-based projects in Richmond, the surrounding area, and around the world.
In recent years, Earlham has also invested heavily in energy efficiency projects. In 2015, the College committed $3.5 million to a new facility assessment and energy-savings project that is on its way to reducing energy consumption across campus by nearly 25 percent.
Since 2013, the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program has recognized four building projects on campus. Both the Center for Science and Technology and Center for Visual and Performance Arts earned LEED Gold certification. Renovations to Stanley and Tyler halls earned LEED Silver and basic certification, respectively.
A highlight of the Center for Science and Technology is a ground-source geothermal system that heats and cools the building and uses half of the energy per square foot compared to other buildings on campus.
Earlham is one of the Princeton Review’s “Green Colleges” and one of the nation’s “Greenest” colleges, according to the Sierra Club.
— EC —
Earlham College, a national liberal arts college located in Richmond, Indiana, is a "College That Changes Lives." We expect our students to be fully present: to think rigorously, value directness and genuineness, and actively seek insights from differing perspectives. The values we practice at Earlham are rooted in centuries of Quaker tradition, but they also constitute the ideal toolkit for contemporary success. Princeton Review ranks Earlham in the Top 15 nationally for Best Classroom Experience, and U.S. News & World Report recognizes the College as one of the nation’s “Most Innovative Schools,” and ranks EC 7th for the percentage of international students on campus, 25th for “Best Undergraduate Teaching” and 34th for “Best Value.”
Brian Zimmerman is director of media relations at Earlham College. He can be reached at 765-983-1256 and firstname.lastname@example.org.